Brussels Airport reported an increase in passenger numbers over the summer months. In 2023, the airport experienced an uptick of 5% compared to the figures in 2022. Here’s an in-depth analysis of the airport’s performance.
Nearly 4.6 Million Passengers Choose Brussels Airport
Brussels Airport became the gateway for nearly 4.6 million travelers during the two-month summer stretch. Both July and August saw roughly 2.3 million passengers each. However, a shift in the school calendar in French-speaking Belgium caused travelers to adjust their vacation timings, particularly during the final week of August.
Arnaud Feist, Brussels Airport Company’s CEO, said, “Passenger numbers at Brussels Airport over the summer holidays have been especially good. The wide range of destinations across Europe and worldwide has tempted many holidaymakers, who were no doubt keen to escape the continuing downpours in Belgium in July. Along with our partners, our priority was to welcome all our passengers safely and in the best possible comfort, with a focus on information and smooth operations. This summer has definitely been a great success for Brussels Airport.”
Brussels Airport August Traffic Report Highlights
- Passenger Increase: Over the summer, 4.6 million individuals traveled via Brussels Airport, a 5% growth when matched with 2022. The revised school calendar in French-speaking Belgium influenced the travel patterns, especially in the initial week of July and the concluding week of August. Notably, August witnessed 2,260,496 passengers, an increase of 5% from 2022. This equates to nearly 200,000 more arrivals than departures, a predictable trend as the summer vacation winds down. Interestingly, 15% were transfer passengers, primarily connecting to Europe, North America, or Africa.
- Top Destinations: The countries passengers flew to in August included Spain, Turkey, Greece, Germany, Italy, Morocco, Portugal, France, the US, and the United Kingdom.
- Air Cargo Volumes: In keeping with the broader industry trend, air cargo volumes dipped slightly in August, recording a 1% decrease to 49,189 tonnes. Full cargo flight segment fell by 8%, while belly cargo (on passenger aircraft) increased by 2%. The air express services segment also increased by 4%. Year-on-year, the air cargo volumes decreased by 6% in August, reaching 58,376 tonnes. This is largely due to a 27% fall in trucked air cargo.
- Flight Movements: An increase of 1% was registered in the number of flight movements in August 2023 compared to 2022. Passenger flights were up by 3% in comparison to the previous year. An average flight in August 2023 carried about 148 passengers, three more than in August 2022. This was possible due to larger planes and a boosted occupancy rate (load factor) for each flight.
Brussels Airport, By the Numbers
Despite the global challenges, Brussels Airport remains a central hub in Europe, effectively managing the increased influx of passengers and maintaining its efficiency.