Fraport Reports Significant Passenger Demand Recovery in 2023
Fraport Reports Significant Passenger Demand Recovery in 2023

Fraport Reports Significant Passenger Demand Recovery in 2023

Frankfurt Airport (FRA) recorded a significant recovery in passenger demand across 2023. In total, some 59.4 million passengers traveled via Germany’s largest aviation hub in 2023 – representing a 21.3 percent increase compared to 2022. However, passenger numbers for 2023 remained 15.9 percent below the pre-crisis 2019 level.

Fraport CEO, Dr. Stefan Schulte, commented: “2023 was yet another challenging year for the aviation industry, particularly in Europe. In addition to the ongoing war in Ukraine, airspace restrictions were also imposed because of the ‘Air Defender’ NATO exercise conducted in Germany. The complex and interconnected system of international air traffic was also disrupted by a number of strikes throughout 2023, including walkouts by French air traffic controllers. Despite these adverse effects and in a mutual effort with our system partners, we succeeded in further stabilizing operations in Frankfurt last year. Our traffic performance for 2023 clearly demonstrates demand is recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic with people’s desire to travel remaining strong. Therefore, I’m optimistic for the new year 2024.

Aircraft movements in Frankfurt climbed by 12.6 percent year-on-year in 2023 to 430,436 takeoffs and landings (2019 comparison: down 16.2 percent). Likewise, accumulated maximum takeoff weights (or MTOWs) grew by 11.4 percent year-on-year to around 27 million metric tons (2019 comparison: down 15.3 percent).

FRA’s cargo throughput (comprising airfreight and airmail) slipped by 3.9 percent year-on-year in 2023 to some 1.9 million metric tons (2019 comparison: down 9.3 percent). Factors contributing to this slowdown included the airspace restrictions across Europe and a sluggish economy resulting from global geopolitical uncertainties.

December 2023: FRA sees strong traffic growth

About 4.6 million passengers travelled via Frankfurt Airport in December 2023. This figure represents a 15.2 percent surge compared to December 2022, while remaining only six percentage points below the 2019 pre-Covid levels. Thus, passenger traffic in December 2023 saw the strongest growth momentum since the pandemic, recovering to 94 percent of pre-crisis levels. Aircraft movements were up 11.2 percent year-on-year to 33,534 takeoffs and landings in December 2023. Accumulated MTOWs rose by 10.8 percent to nearly 2.2 million metric tons.
Cargo also remained positive, rising by 7.2 percent year-on-year to 171,118 metric tons in December 2023. As in previous years, cargo benefitted from increased demand during the Christmas period.

Fraport’s global Group airports report significant traffic increase

Most of the airports in Fraport’s international portfolio saw traffic surge during 2023. Slovenia’s Ljubljana Airport led the line in 2023, with traffic soaring by 30.9 percent year-on-year to about 1.3 million passengers (2019 comparison: down 26.2 percent). In December 2023, LJU counted 87,378 passengers (up 44.4 percent year-on-year).

Fraport’s 14 Greek regional airports registered traffic growth of 11.8 percent year-on-year in 2023 to some 33.9 million passengers overall (2019 comparison: up 12.3 percent). In December 2023, the Greek airports served a total of 754,184 passengers (up 12.7 percent year-on-year).

On the Bulgarian Black Sea coast, the Fraport Twin Star airports of Burgas (BOJ) and Varna (VAR) also showed a positive performance during 2023. Combined traffic at BOJ and VAR rose by 17.9 percent year-on-year to around 3.7 million passengers (2019 comparison: down 25.8 percent). In December 2023, BOJ and VAR reported a slowdown of 13.1 percent year-on-year to a total of 90,473 passengers.

Traffic at Antalya Airport (AYT) on the Turkish Riviera advanced by 15.0 percent year-on-year in 2023 to approximately 35.7 million passengers (2019 comparison: up 0.7 percent). In December 2023, AYT welcomed about 1.0 million passengers (up 9.3 percent year-on-year)
The Brazilian airports of Fortaleza (FOR) and Porto Alegre (POA) saw combined 2023 traffic gain 5.2 percent year-on-year to about 13.1 million passengers (2019 comparison: down 15.7 percent). Passenger numbers at FOR and POA for December 2023 dipped by 0.6 percent to around 1.1 million.

Traffic at Lima Airport (LIM) in Peru’s capital city grew by 14.1 percent year-on year in 2023 to some 21.3 million passengers (2019 comparison: down 10.1 percent). Around 2.0 million passengers used LIM in December 2023 (up 14.0 percent year-on-year).