In March 2021, passenger traffic at Frankfurt Airport (FRA) continued to be severely impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. Serving 925,277 passengers in the reporting month, FRA posted a 56.4 percent decline compared to March 2020 when the onset of the coronavirus crisis already reduced traffic significantly. A comparison with March 2019 shows an even stronger traffic decrease of 83.5 percent for the reporting month.1 During the January-to-March 2021 period, nearly 2.5 million passengers traveled via FRA. Compared to same first-quarter period in the past two years, this represents a decline of 77.6 percent and 83.2 percent versus 2020 and 2019, respectively.
Frankfurt’s robust growth was achieved despite the ongoing shortage of belly capacity normally provided by passenger aircraft. Aircraft movements decreased by 40.1 percent year-on-year to 13,676 takeoffs and landings. Accumulated maximum takeoff weights (MTOWs) contracted by 30.3 percent to about 1.1 million metric tons.
The airports in Fraport’s international portfolio reported mixed results for March 2021, with passenger traffic still largely affected by the pandemic situation in the respective regions. Some of Fraport’s Group airports worldwide even posted growth compared to March 2020, albeit on the basis of noticeably reduced traffic volumes already in that month. When compared to March 2019, all Group airports registered noticeable passenger declines in the reporting month.
Slovenia’s Ljubljana Airport (LJU) saw traffic sink by 78.3 percent year-on-year to 7,907 passengers in March 2021. Combined, the two Brazilian airports of Fortaleza (FOR) and Porto Alegre (POA) received a total of 330,162 passengers, down 57.7 percent. Traffic at Peru’s Lima Airport (LIM) dropped by 46.2 percent to 525,309 passengers.
The 14 Greek regional airports registered a total traffic decline of 60.0 percent year-on-year to 117,665 passengers. On the Bulgarian Black Sea coast, the Twin Star airports of Burgas (BOJ) and Varna (VAR) together welcomed 21,502 passengers in March 2021, down 46.1 percent. Traffic at Antalya Airport (AYT) in Turkey slipped by 2.1 percent to 558,061 passengers. Serving some 1.1 million passengers in the reporting month, Pulkovo Airport (LED) in St. Petersburg, Russia, achieved growth of 11.1 percent year-on-year. At Xi’an Airport (XIY) in China, traffic soared to more than 3.4 million passengers during March 2021 – a noticeable rebound compared to March 2020, when China was already hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic. But even when compared to pre-crisis March 2019, XIY posted a traffic decline of only 9.0 percent in the reporting month.