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February airport traffic growth even higher at +10,3%

Passenger traffic across the European airport network in February 2016 grew by an average of +10.3% – boosted in part by the ‘leap year’ effect of having an additional day in the month, compared with February 2015.

BRUSSELS – European airport trade association, ACI Europe releases its traffic report for February 2016. This is the only air transport report which includes all types of civil aviation passenger flights to and from Europe: full service, low cost, charter and others.

Passenger traffic across the European airport network in February 2016 grew by an average of +10.3% – boosted in part by the ‘leap year’ effect of having an additional day in the month, compared with February 2015.

This resulted in all national markets recording positive growth, including Russia – with many achieving double digit growth. Amongst the top 10 European airports, Barcelona-El Prat (+20,4%), Madrid-Adolfo Suarez (+15,5%) and Amsterdam-Schiphol (+13,6%) led the surge.  

EU airports reported an average increase in passenger traffic of +10.4%. The growth was particularly dynamic in the Southern and Western periphery of the bloc (Cyprus, Greece, Portugal, Spain and Ireland), most of its Eastern part (Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Czech Republic, Poland, Lithuania and Latvia) and the Benelux.

Passenger traffic at Non-EU airports grew by +9.7%, mainly driven by Iceland, Ukraine, Israel and Turkey.  

Olivier Jankovec, Director General ACI Europe said “The extra day in February played a big part in February’s stellar traffic figures, but it is not the full story. On the back of a very good 2015, Europe’s airports continue to perform very well in terms of passenger traffic. Improving macroeconomic conditions, in particular low commodity prices and consumers eager to spend on travel and leisure, are fundamental to that. The aviation market remains dynamic, with mounting disruptive forces at play on the airline side as well as ever increasing competition between airports. This all plays very well on the demand side – for the passenger.”

He added: “Maintaining this positive momentum is not a given. The recent terrorist attacks in Brussels are a stark reminder that external risks can materialise, with the potential of bringing aviation to a halt – albeit temporarily. While the attacks had a minor impact on demand for air travel beyond Belgium, Brussels Airport faced extremely challenging circumstances to reopen the airport 12 days after the events. The entire European airport industry stands by Brussels Airport and its community – and we wish them all the very best restoring full operations in the weeks ahead.”

Breakdown by traffic category
During the month of February, airports welcoming more than 25 million passengers per year (Group 1), airports welcoming between 10 and 25 million passengers (Group 2), airports welcoming between 5 and 10 million passengers (Group 3) and airports welcoming less than 5 million passengers per year (Group 4) reported an average growth of +9.1%, +10.7%, +13.9% and +10.0%.

The airports which reported the highest increases in passenger traffic during February 2016 (compared with 2015) are as follows:

  • Group 1: Istanbul SAW (+24.3%), Barcelona El-Prat (+20.4%), Dublin (+17.2%), Copenhagen (+16.0%), Madrid-Barajas (+15.5%)
  • Group 2: Cologne-Bonn (+32.1%), Alicante (+21.2%), Athens (+18.1%), Malaga (+17.7%) and Edinburgh (+17.2%)
  • Group 3: Berlin SXF (+47.4%), Faro (+21.9%), Bucharest OTP (+21.8%), Porto (+21.5%) and Larnaca (+21.2%)
  • Group 4: Ohrid (+290.8%), Santorini/Thira (+149.8%), Maribor (+114.6%), Kharkiv (+78.2%) and Hammerfest (+65.1%)

The ‘ACI Europe Airport Traffic Report – February 2016’ includes 216 airports in total representing more than 88% of European air passenger traffic.

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Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.

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