MIAMI — Norwegian has launched new flights between London-Gatwick (LGW) and Tampa International Airport, becoming the airline’s 15th destination in the US and the third in Florida after Orlando (MCO) and Fort Lauderdale (FLL).

Also, the airport has logged record-breaking traffic numbers, surpassing a milestone of 20 million passengers for the first time in its history.

The UK is the airline’s most popular transatlantic destination for US travelers, with around 4 million flying with Norwegian to the UK in 2017.

Bjørn Kjos, Founder, and CEO of Norwegian said, “It’s an exciting time for Norwegian in the U.S. as we continue to widen our footprint in one of the most active states for outbound and inbound travel in America, Florida.”

“Our first flight from this state took off in 2013 from Fort Lauderdale and since then we’ve grown to become the largest foreign airline to offer transatlantic nonstop routes,” he said.

Kjos foresees continued growth in Florida, including new gateways and more routes.

The airline’s CEO said that the airline “will continue to attract more tourists and add more jobs in the state as demand for our award-winning product and service broadens.”

Gavin Landry, VisitBritain Executive Vice President, Americas added that record-breaking numbers of tourists visiting the UK were logged last year, “including strong growth from the U.S., our most valuable inbound visitor market for tourism spending.”

“We want to build on the strong growth we have seen and are delighted to be working with Norwegian to introduce new visitors from Tampa Bay and its surrounding areas to London and beyond,” he said.

Joe Lopano, CEO of Tampa International Airport, thanked the airline’s investment in Tampa Bay.

“We’re eager to show them why Trip Advisor, Travel + Leisure, and JD Power all rank Tampa International Airport among the world’s best,” he said.

Tampa Continues To Grow: Domestic and International

Tampa International Airport continues to bring in good news, logging a record-breaking 21,013,788 passengers for the end of the 2018 fiscal year. It is the first time the airport passes the 20 million mark.

The number represents a 9.3 percent increase over the previous year, exceeding growth rate projections.

The airport claims that the increase in passenger numbers are largely driven by Frontier Airlines, responsible for an 83% rise in traffic after it added 13 new routes during the year.

Southwest Airlines included more than 12 additional flights during this year’s spring break, boosting passenger numbers in a considerable amount

Spirit, another LCC, added eight nonstop routes, translating in a 45.5% increase in traffic.

Internationally, Icelandair also launched a nonstop Reykjavik flight, increasing from two initial flights to four per week.

With Norwegian’s new inclusion to London, the traffic figures will only continue climbing.