European airport trade association ACI EUROPE released its traffic report for May 2018, during which average passenger traffic in geographical Europe grew by +6.1 per cent compared with the same month last year – a slight deceleration compared to Q1 (+7.6 per cent).
The non-EU market continued to lead the growth dynamic, with passenger traffic up by +8 per cent (+12.5 per cent in Q1). While gains were especially strong at airports in Georgia (+27 per cent), Iceland (+26.5 per cent), Montenegro (+22.2 per cent), Ukraine (+20.7 per cent), FYROM (+16.1 per cent) Albania (+14.1 per cent) and Israel (+12.5 per cent), the pace of growth was more moderate in Russia (+8.6 per cent) and Turkey (+7.5 per cent).
The EU market saw passenger traffic increase by +5.5 per cent (+6.2 per cent in Q1) – with ATC & airline strikes, the lasting impact of the bankruptcies of Air Berlin & Monarch as well as weather disruptions limiting growth. As in previous months, airports in the Eastern and Southern parts of the bloc along with Finland and Luxembourg significantly outperformed this average.
Passenger traffic at the Majors (top 5 European airports) grew by +3 per cent, on the back of a rather contrasted performance. While Frankfurt came on top, with an impressive +9.5 per cent increase, Istanbul-Atatürk registered the lowest performance at -0.3 per cent. Meanwhile, passenger traffic grew by +3.1 per cent at London-Heathrow, +3 per cent at Amsterdam-Schiphol and +2.1 per cent at Paris-CDG.
Freight traffic was almost flat in May across the European airport network at +0.8 per cent – confirming a significant downward trend since the beginning of the year. Aircraft movements were up +2.6 per cent, increasing by just +1.9 per cent in the EU market – again a reflection of ATC & airline strikes, the bankruptcies of Air Berlin & Monarch and weather disruptions. Aircraft movements increased by +4.2 per cent in the non-EU bloc.
During the month of May, 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 adjustment +5.4 per cent, +5.1 per cent, +8.4 per cent and +8.7 per cent.