The Essex terminal topped the poll with a customer score of 85% - a 1% increase on last year - and a maximum five star rating in seven of the ten categories assessed (that’s an improvement on the five categories maximum scored in the 2013 poll).
This left other London airports such as City (80%), Heathrow (Terminal 5, 64%), Gatwick (North, 49%) Stansted (43%) and Luton (37%) lagging further down the table.
In June 2014, 7,011 Which? members were asked to complete an online survey about their experiences of flying from a UK airport in the past year.
The customer scores are based on a combination of overall satisfaction and how likely people are to recommend the airport to a friend.
Categories surveyed included queues at security, Pick-up and Drop-off, queues for Passport Control, queues for Bag Drop, queues for Baggage Reclaim, space following Security and distance to Boarding Gate (all of which London Southend scored the maximum five stars in), plus seating provision, queues for Check-In and food outlets.
London Southend Airport Managing Director Roger Clements said “This is fantastic news and once again testament to all the hard work that the team here at London Southend has put in. We think our short walking distances, friendly staff and unique ‘Simply Easier’ promises to passengers – that they should wait no more than 4-minutes to go through security and that, on arrival with hand baggage, they are on the rail station platform within 15 minutes of leaving the aircraft with a fast and frequent service to the heart of London every 20-minutes – are the key factors of our success over the last two years and why more and more passengers are choosing London's newest airport.”
He added “Around the time this survey was undertaken we completed a £10 million extension to the terminal in order to ensure that we continue to deliver these high standards of customer service as the airport grows. As well as increased Check-In and Security Desks the Departure Lounge also became 4.5 times larger, meaning a huge increase in seating provision. We are now investing heavily in new restaurant and bar facilities and we hope to have them open by early 2015. So next year when Which? undertakes its survey we
are aiming to top score in all of the categories.”
Which? Executive Director, Richard Lloyd, said: “The message from travellers is clear – larger airports continue to let people down on the basics, from baggage reclaim to food outlets. People deserve an enjoyable break without any stress, so we want to hear from consumers so that we can help to stop the holiday hassles."