Though Donald Trump and first lady Melania might not be doing much international travel at the moment amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, they do usually visit the UK on official business. However, when the fly land on UK soil, there is one airport they prefer.
The US President has so far made three official visits to the UK.
On all three occasions, he has flown into Stansted airport, rather than the UK’s main flight hub.
Though notably smaller than Heathrow, Stansted is still the UK’s fourth business airport, following Heathrow, Gatwick and Manchester.
What’s more, it is apparently its distant location from London that makes it more favourable.
Stansted airport sits 37 miles outside of central London.
The airport is also favoured by authorities dealing with hijacked planes or terrorist incident, as its design allows a hijacked airliner to be isolated away from the terminal building.
The runway and plane parking areas are a lot further from the main buildings than with some other airports.
Due to this, staff routinely go through security drills, and the airport even has its own specialist security staff on hand in the event of a hijack or related emergency.
Though the airport is small, due to its use by the Government, since 1982 seven separate suspected hijack or terrorist incidents have been diverted to Stansted to be safely intercepted.
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The most recent of these was in 2017 when RAF Typhoons from the Quick Reaction Alert team intercepted a Ryanair flight inbound to Luton after a bomb threat.
The plane was diverted to Luton, where it was discovered the bomb threat was a hoax.
However, Donald Trump isn’t the only US president to utilise Stansted airport.
Barack Obama also opted to fly into and out of the flight hub for his three UK visits in 2009, 2011 and 2016.
While the US presidents might favour Stansted, however, Heathrow remains a firm favourite for the UK Royal family.
Queen Elizabeth and the younger Royals all fly from Heathrow.
The family even have their own private terminal hidden within the flight hub.
According to a Channel 5 documentary it is nestled in Terminal Five behind a private door.
In ‘Secets of the Royal flight’ the show’s narrator reveals an exclusive look inside the terminal.
Footage shows the special room complete with marble polished floors and a glass roof said to be constructed from “bombproof glass”.
According to The Sun’s Royal Commentator Emily Andrews: “It’s basically like a posh hotel lounge, where they just turn about 40 minutes to an hour before if that.”
She adds: “Sometimes Prince Harry, in particular, has literally turned up half an hour before a flight screeching into the Windsor Suite.”
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