2:50pm. Monday 17 October 2011
Post by: Stewart Wingate, CEO
Last week, I was delighted to take part in Gatwick’s very first Twitter Q&A. For one hour I was live online answering as many of your questions as possible - and it was a great success! I was asked 112 questions via #askgatwick with queries ranging from airline routes, to security, how we support local businesses and even about 'Inside Gatwick' our documentary that's on air at the moment.
I managed to answer 33 questions during the hour, so apologies to everyone I didn't get to. The Twitter team has been busy getting through as many of the outstanding questions as possible though, after the event. For those of you who missed the session we have copied a full transcript of the Q&A below. We plan to host another live session in the not too distant future, so keep following us on Twitter @Gatwick_Airport to find out more. And don't forget you can always call us out and ask us a question at any time.
Transcript of Q&A session - 12th October 2011
• Hi! I’m Stewart Wingate, CEO here @Gatwick_Airport and for the next hour I’m here to answer your questions on the Gatwick feed #askGatwick
• To follow the conversation follow #askGatwick and tweet @Gatwick_Airport with any questions you might have
• Make sure you use the hashtag #askGatwick with your questions!
• I’ll RT questions before I answer them - ready when you are! #askGatwick
• Send me your Qs about our developments and destinations. Where will @Gatwick_Airport next take you? #askGatwick
• Depending on the volume of Qs we get I might not be able to answer all - I'll try & respond to as many as I can before 17:00 #askGatwick
Questions and answers
Question 1 - Runways
journalistben: Surely the only solution to SE airport exp is 2nd runway at LGW - is it not time to overturn legal constraint?
gatwick_airport: 2nd runway is not part of our current plan I'm focused on improving the experience for our annual 32m passengers #askgatwick
Question 2 - Parking
brazilianvwbay: #askgatwick When, if at all, will there be short term parking for high sided vehicles again at both North and South Terminals?
gatwick_airport: There's parking at South terminal short stay for high-sided vehicles. At North please use long stay parking #askgatwick
Question 3 - Terminals
thesegoto11: Which terminal will Lufthansa be flying from on the new LGW-Frankfurt route? #askgatwick
gatwick_airport: Lufthansa will fly form our South Terminal when it starts services to Frankfurt at the end of the month #askGatwick
Question 4 - Control tower
spacedj3: Hello! My question to the CEO is Will Gatwick replace it's current control tower? I like the current one! :) #askgatwick
gatwick_airport: We're quite fond of our control tower we are pleased that it survived the lightning strike, no plans to replace #askgatwick
Question 5 - Check-in times
iwantparking: When flying to Europe, what's the definitive answer to how early we have to be at the airport?
gatwick_airport: depends on your airline, when I fly I always ensure I am at the airport three hours before #askGatwick
Question 6 - Airlines
routesnews: What airlines would you like to see fly to Gatwick? #askgatwick
gatwick_airport: @routesnews We already have the more airlines than any other UK airport...#askgatwick with very successful routes running with Asian airlines #askGatwick
Question 7 - Ambitions for the airport
routesnews: your ambition is to be London's favourite airport, are you achieving this? #askgatwick
gatwick_airport: our ambition is to compete and grow to become London's airport of choice, that's the journey that we are on #askgatwick
Question 8 - Punctuality
atfcm:#askgatwick your CTOT adherence is 87,5% which is 1,6% above European average. Very good, but how are you going to further improve that?
gatwick_airport: We're working with our airlines to drive better punctuality and have even had F1 teams in to speed up our turn arounds #askGatwick
Question 9 - Airlines
fhavg: What is being done by @Gatwick_Airport to attract non-European carriers to use your airport? #askgatwick
gatwick_airport: We're offering competitive packages which seem to be working, recent success - @British_Airways @AirAsia #askGatwick
Question 10 - Airlines
graham_ontravel: #askgatwick Any plans to attract further carriers to Airport offering key USA destinations such as JFK,LAX,BWI,EWR,DFW ??
gatwick_airport: Having discussions to expand our US carriers, already enjoying working with @VirginAtlantic @Delta @USAirways #askGatwick
Question 11 - Capital Investment Programme
graham_ontravel: Is the Capital Investment Programme on schedule to finish in March 2013?
gatwick_airport: £1bn program on schedule for 2013, also agreed additional £250m for 2014 #askGatwick
Question 12 - Snow disruption
adamcudworth: What steps have been taken to ensure a situation like last winter (snow) doesn't occur again? Extra ploughs? #askGatwick
gatwick_airport: November was extraordinary last year, we've doubled our snow fleet we'll work our socks off to deal with the snow #askGatwick
Question 13 - Baggage handling
skinnychris83: why did it take an hour and a half to get my bag when we landed and generally why is ur airport so badly run? #askGatwick
gatwick_airport: This is too long, sorry to hear that, this is a focus area for us #askGatwick
Question 14 - Local business
lcpcc119: Should GAL highlight it is in westsussex more including locally sourced food/drink in concessions?
gatwick_airport: Since change of ownership we are certainly directing more of our business in to our backyard, like this idea! #askGatwick
Tweet from Gatwick Airport – Stewart re-introducing himself and hashtag reminder:
This is Stewart Wingate here, CEO of @Gatwick_Airport and I’m here until 17.00 to answer questions about all things Gatwick #askGatwick
Question 15 - Railway station
richardlawes: why use the awful 'train station' ? It's a railway station.
gatwick_airport: we don't like the train/railway station either and we are working with @networkrail to invest £53m #askGatwick
Question 16 – New routes
skybluestacey: Hi Stewart, Any new routes planned from Gatwick? Also what are the worst/best aspects of your job?
gatwick_airport: we offer more routes than any other UK airport over 200, Summer 2011 great growth including @EasyJet @Monarch #askGatwick
gatwick_airport: Best bits: seeing people travel rarely see a sad traveler! Worst bits: fighting nature (snow thunder volcanoes!) #askGatwick
Question 17 - Security staff
nicolajane23: #askgatwick Why are the staff in your £45m new security area so rude?? They make everyone feel terrible.
gatwick_airport: .@nicolajane23 working really hard with our staff most of them love working here sorry we didnt meet your expectations this time #askGatwick
Question 18 - Security gates
emilyavnicholls: i've heard great things about the new automated gates at security in S.terminal! have you had any problems? #askgatwick
gatwick_airport: We are pioneering this for the UK, we've got lots of hosts and so far so good #askGatwick
Question 19 - Buggy lanes
pippavinall: Why is it not possible to put buggies at gate on arrival- that plus long queue thru passport makes it so hard
gatwick_airport: We've introduced the family friendly lanes and we trialed buggy to gate and looking to roll this out #askGatwick
Question 20 - Runways
susanfenton: #askGatwick when you are allowed to do so, will you try to revive the attempts to build a second runway?
gatwick_airport: Our immediate focus is on a single runway and two terminals, we are safe guarding to meet future demand #askGatwick
Question 21 - Low cost airlines
adriaanN: Is there any scope to increase the number of flights, particularly of #Lowcost airlines? #askgatwick
gatwick_airport: Low cost carriers are thriving at Gatwick @easyjet @norwegian RyanAir @airberlin @flybe #askGatwick
Question 22 - Shuttle station
verenabach: #askGatwick Why is the new shuttle train station at North Term open air? I preferred to be warm and dry I have to say.
gatwick_airport: .@verenabach You'll certainly be dry it's under cover and it will be light and airy #askGatwick
Question 23 - Security
frannieWTF: @Gatwick_Airport is the IRIS at terminal north working now? #askgatwick
gatwick_airport: Replacement is facial recognition gates 50% of passengers are now using these all you need is a chipped passport #askGatwick
Question 24 - Future investments
kdhurst380: @Gatwick_Airport Hi! I see that investment as far as 2012 is planned, but will improvements go beyond? #askgatwick
gatwick_airport: Currently investing £1m per working day and an additional £250m planned for 2014 #askGatwick
Tweet from Gatwick Airport: Time reminder:
I'm here live on @gatwick_airport's feed for another ten minutes to answer as many questions as I can before 17:00 #askgatwick
Question 25 – Terminal improvements
bensaint: As regular traveller in/out Gwick- when will the 'improvements' be finished in entry hall in South terminal? #askGatwick
gatwick_airport: South terminal plaza finished March 2012 improvements will be ongoing, looking better all the time #askGatwick
Question 26 - Passport control
gordon007: we use Gatwick once a year. We returned from Vegas Saturday & have never experienced getting through passport as quick.Well done
gatwick_airport: Thank you great to hear it. Hope you had as much luck when you were in Vegas! #askGatwick
Question 27 - Snow disruption
gossiphub: what are you doing to improve your winter resilience program? Heathrow has announced big improvements #askgatwick
gatwick_airport: We led the way in 2010 by investing £8m to double our snow fleet, fly with us this December! #askGatwick
Question 28 - BAA Ruling
tobyelliottuk: Hi Stewart, do you think the Competition Commission's ruling regarding BAA will help or hinder your airport? #askgatwick @Gatwick_Airport
gatwick_airport: We support separate ownership, hope you've already seen the benefits of competition at Gatwick #askGatwick
Question 29: Inside Gatwick
skybluestacey: @Gatwick_Airport #askgatwick Inside Gatwick is great TV. Any plans for another series when this ends?
gatwick_airport: .@SkyBlueStacey glad you enjoyed the first one! would you like to see a sequel? #askgatwick
Question 30: Snow disruption
StuBaileyPhoto: @Gatwick_Airport Are you ready for any snow we get this year? Will you be using TopGear's SnowBine? ;-) #askgatwick
gatwick_airport: @StuBaileyPhoto we went to Scandinavia too that is where we bought our Snowbine, quite happy to have James May come drive ours! #askgatwick
Final Time Reminder
It's now 17:00 and we have time for just one more question! #askgatwick
Question 31: New routes
desolatemoon: @Gatwick_Airport Lufthansa are starting LGW-FRA route this month. Do you know if they plan to add other routes? #askGatwick
gatwick_airport: great to see @Lufthansa running double daily routes, great connections from Frankfurt, forward bookings strong #askgatwick
Question 32: Middle East airlines
robeelhaq: Can Gatwick win back the Middle East airlines that left this year or else attrack new Middle East airlines? #askgatwick
gatwick_airport: @flyingemirates performing well, 3 flights daily, we know they have A380s on order would love to see them at Gatwick #askGatwick
Closing of session:
That's all we have time for today. Thanks to everyone who joined in, I hope you enjoyed it as much as I have! #askgatwick
Thank you all for 100+ #askGatwick questions, amazing response! The team will try to address as many of the remaining questions as possible
NB: Two additional responses were also sent about snow:
.@marcellk In 2010 we invested £8m to double our snow fleet, fly with us this December! #askGatwick
.@SkyBlueStacey In 2010 we invested £8m to double our snow fleet, fly with us this Dec!
Hear from Stewart and the team
Join in our converstion on what matters to Stewart Wingate and his team.