Meeting the airline sector’s expectations that passenger traffic will resume to the pre-pandemic levels in 2019, when tourism was at record levels, April’s passenger traffic to Greece has made the travel industry optimistic.
Based on the summer schedules of the airlines and the reservations of hoteliers, as the tourist season intensifies, figures indicate that the gap in performance between 2019 and this year will be bridged, with passenger traffic estimated to exceed that of 2019.
This said, market executives underline that despite the apparent return of traffic to 2019 levels, the greater goal is to achieve good performance over a twelve-month basis, not only the summer season.
Some airports showed higher passenger traffic numbers in April this year than in 2019. The small airport in Aktio near Preveza more than doubled its passenger numbers compared to 2019.
Thessaloniki saw a sharp rise of 12%, Kavala’s traffic spiked by 23% and in Skiathos, passenger traffic rose by 23.2%, compared to the same month in 2019. Rhodes marked a 7.38% rise, Kos 5.32% and Zakynthos 10.5% in relation to 2019 levels. In Chania, passenger traffic remained almost the same as it was in April three years ago.
With the first quarter of 2022 as a reference point, compared to the same period in 2019, passenger traffic at the 14 regional airports corresponds to 81% of 2019. At that time, 3.3 million passengers were handled, a figure that is now 2.7 million in the same period this year.
If compared to 2021 – a year in which the pandemic was still significantly affecting travel – passenger traffic at the 14 regional airports is significantly higher. Last year in April, 162.4 thousand people had travelled through the 14 airports, a figure that rose to 1.4 million (762%) this year.
This article was previously published in Greek at moneyreview.gr.