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Calm Christmas Eve at Gatwick

05 January 2015 09:30

Gatwick Airport is reporting a busy Christmas Eve but there is no sign of last year's issues

Gatwick Airport is reporting a busy Christmas Eve but there is no sign of last year's issues

What a difference a year makes. Last Christmas Eve was a day of chaos and confusion for passengers at Gatwick Airport but the atmosphere there this year could not be more contrasting.

Last year, flooding problems at the West Sussex airport caused power cuts and delayed and cancelled flights. Tweets from passengers were full of anger and disappointment as they contemplated making travel insurance claims.

This year, passengers are taking to Twitter to tell the world how the airport looks "Christmassy".

There is no shortage of travellers at Gatwick and other UK airports as an estimated four million people are spending Christmas abroad this year. Many flights are full and the departure lounges are packed.

Nicola Keleher tweeted how the South Terminal at Gatwick was "super-busy" but she enjoyed being entertained by singers and an "amazing polar bear".

Another passenger, Rhiannon Morton, tweeted about the Christmas atmosphere at the airport and about seeing a giant snow globe, Santa and Frosty the Snowman.

Brits waiting for long-haul flights are heading for the likes of Egypt, Cuba, Mexico and Dubai, while many other flyers will be spending the season in Morocco, Tunisia and the Canary Islands.

British Airways will be serving 37,000 turkey dinners on its 267 flights on Christmas Day to destinations such as Australia, Barbados, Barcelona and New York.

Ryanair expects to fly half a million more passengers between December 20 and January 6 this year than it did over the same period 12 months ago, a total of 3.5 million travellers.

Although a strike by French cabin crew is affecting some Easyjet flights, none of them take off or land from the UK.

It might be a busy Christmas Eve for airports, but not on the trains. Many of the main line trains and Tubes were less busy than usual.

Most of the disruption caused by a £200 million engineering programme is expected to be on Christmas Day and Boxing Day.

There was some disruption to the West Coast Main Line due to work at Watford and between Crewe and Stafford.