01-May 2024

Cargo First – Bournemouth Airport celebrates its second anniversary

Bob Matharoo, Head of Cargo Development, reflects on successes to date and opportunities ahead

Two years ago, we launched Cargo First as the cargo services brand of Bournemouth Airport.  Building on an existing base of cargo handling operations experience, with the new name we sought to highlight the importance of airfreight to the airport and position ourselves solidly on the global stage.

Over the course of the relatively short time since, there’s been a seismic shift in terms of recognition of Bournemouth – particularly in the critical Far East e-commerce origin markets – as a truly viable alternative entry point into the UK.

At only 90 minutes road journey time to the main west of London logistics warehouse zone, our customers tell us that with the efficiencies secured on site at Bournemouth in terms of processing time from aircraft touchdown to truck, freight arriving with us can reach its final warehouse destination quicker than if it had landed at one of the congested London hub airports. 

Bearing in mind also the benefits of uncongested airspace and therefore shorter flying times (with the associated airfreight costs and emissions savings that brings) we firmly believe that Bournemouth can be considered a true alternative access point both for the London market, but also for the southern half of the UK – covering some 65% of the country’s population.

What’s changed over the last two years is the dominance of e-commerce in terms of being the primary catalyst for growth in air cargo.  Regardless of the geopolitical events that have caused spikes in demand along the way, it is very clear that e-commerce will continue to deliver substantial volume growth for the foreseeable future – and Cargo First are uniquely positioned within the UK to support this:

  • Our One Team service helps us keep things simple and ensures we can deliver on our ‘speed to market’ promise
  • We have an uncongested airfield and airspace, which means we’ve got plenty of capacity to grow with flexibility on slot times (which are within our control too)
  • With a substantial land estate alongside the airfield, also within the ownership of our parent company, we also have substantial room to develop warehousing and other associated infrastructure for cargo

Having created a respected cargo handling service, we placed ourselves firmly on a growth trajectory that will see us doubling our throughput within the next few years and put us squarely on target towards becoming the UK’s number one e-commerce airfreight handling facility.

Our strapline is “Welcome to faster airfreight” – at Cargo First we live and breathe that philosophy regardless of how big or small the consignment, as we recognise that this promise is equally important to every client.

Why not get in touch with us today and discover how we can deliver tangible benefits for your business?

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