GLASGOW Airport last month welcomed more than one million passengers through its gates in the month of June for the first time, as its Edinburgh counterpart enjoyed its second busiest month on record.

The start of the school summer holidays was highlighted by Glasgow as overall passenger numbers climbed by 5.7 per cent to 1,000,022, with international traffic up 10.4 per cent to 618,528 travellers.

It was the first time that the one million passenger tally was recorded by the airport in June, having previously reached that number in July 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2016. Glasgow is also on course to reach the one million number this July.

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Busy traffic was reported on traditional “bucket and spade” routes to holiday destinations, including Orlando, the Canary Islands and Malaga, while the introduction of flights to Lisbon and Valencia by Ryanair in May are understood to be proving popular. The Lisbon route got off to a flying start as Celtic fans took the chance to visit the city to mark the 50th anniversary of the Glasgow team’s European Cup win in May.

Glasgow also cited the positive impact made by the launch of Delta Air Line’s daily service to JFK in New York, with the double-daily Emirates flight to Dubai continuing to attract big numbers.

The airport said there was a 12.4 per cent increased in passengers on long-haul routes due to strong demand for services to New York and Dubai. And it noted that demand for EU-scheduled services jumped 16.1 per cent on the back of extra capacity on routes to city-break destinations such as Berlin, Amsterdam, Bucharest and Dusseldorf, as well as new routes to Brussels, Valencia and Lisbon.

However, while international passenger numbers soared the number of domestic travellers passing through Glasgow fell marginally in June. The airport said 381,494 passengers travelled from Glasgow to domestic routes last month, down 1.1 per cent on June 2016. Fewer people made business trips to London and other parts of the UK because of the start of the summer holiday season, although this was partly offset by increased traffic on regional routes.

Amanda McMillan, managing director of Glasgow Airport, said: “June is traditionally one of our busiest months of the year, but to exceed one million passengers is yet another significant achievement for Glasgow Airport.

“Our strong performance in the first half of 2017 has been driven by our efforts to enhance existing services and expand our growing network with new destinations to give even more choice to our customers, including the launch of Ryanair’s new Zadar route last week.

“Later this month we’ll see a return of Scotland’s only direct link with Seoul as Korean Air’s in-bound charter service returns with an additional flight.

“Route development continues to be a key priority in driving growth at the airport and we’re looking forward to welcoming a number of services in the second half of 2017 to exciting new destinations including Madrid, Krakow and Frankfurt.”

Meanwhile, Edinburgh Airport said 1,304,074 passengers passed through its terminal as it enjoyed its busiest June on record, with numbers up 11.1 per cent on the same month last year. It means June 2017 goes down as the second busiest month in the airport’s history, eclipsed only by July 2016.

Passengers passing through Edinburgh en route to international locations grew by 15 per cent on June last year to 822,371, the airport reported. Domestic traffic increased 5.1 per cent to 481,703.

Edinburgh launched five new routes in June, including three transatlantic routes operated by Norwegian. The airline now flies a daily flight from Edinburgh to Stewart International, which serves New York, and four times a week to Providence Rhode Island. It also three times per week to Bradley International in Hartford, Connecticut.

Gordon Dewar, chief executive of Edinburgh Airport, said: “What we’re seeing is a steady surge in international passengers as we add more and more destinations to our already impressive list.

“The new Norwegian Air transatlantic flights and BA CityFlyer and Aegean routes to Palma and Athens respectively have played their part, as have flights launched last year.

“We’ve listened to our passengers and our airlines and we’ve invested over £21 million in the areas that can really make a difference to our customers’ journeys, including six new aircraft stands opening this month which will increase capacity.

“We are delivering and looking for greater options for passengers and will continue to do so as we connect Scotland to the world.”