Thursday 21 September 2017

Dublin now the fastest-growing large airport in Europe

Dublin Airport handled almost 3 million passengers in August, and nearly 18.9 million in the first eight months of 2016. Photo: Bloomberg
Dublin Airport handled almost 3 million passengers in August, and nearly 18.9 million in the first eight months of 2016. Photo: Bloomberg
John Mulligan

John Mulligan

Dublin was the fastest-growing large European airport during August, with passenger numbers rising by 9pc that month to just under three million, according to new data from Airports Council International (ACI).

In the eight months to the end of August, it handled 18.9 million passengers, 12pc more than that in the corresponding period in 2015.

It's on track to handle 27 million passengers this year, and could even approach 28 million.

Last year between September and December, Dublin Airport handled over 8.2 million passengers.

Given that corresponding figures for that period this year are almost certain to be higher, that will see the airport's full-year tally easily top the 27 million mark. Last year, it handled 25 million.

The figures from ACI Europe show that of Europe's large airports that handle over 25 million passengers a year, Dublin was the fastest-growing, ahead of Amsterdam's Schiphol, Barcelona, Copenhagen and London Gatwick.

The average pace of growth across European airports during August was just 2pc.

ACI said that airports in the core mainland European economies of France and Germany barely grew or even declined because of terrorism threats taking a toll on demand.

Growth at UK airports remained above the EU average, at 5pc. In Turkey, passenger numbers slumped 14.9pc in August.

Dublin's performance in August ranked it the seventeenth-biggest airport in Europe, with London Heathrow remaining the biggest.

Heathrow handled 7.3 million passengers in August.

For passengers handled in first eight months of the year, Dublin is ranked 16th, with 18.88 million. That's 12pc more than it handled in the first eight months of 2015.

ACI figures also show that Cork fared well in August. Its airport, which is also controlled by the DAA, handled 251,300 passengers in August, which was 12.8pc more than in August 2015. For the first eight months of the year, it handled 1.55 million passengers, up 9pc on the corresponding period in 2015.

At Shannon, passenger growth was more subdued in August, climbing 2.4pc to 204,400. For the first eight months of the year, it handled just over 1.2 million passengers.

That was 2.3pc more than in the first eight months of 2015.

Shannon Airport now operates as an independent entity. It split from the DAA in 2012.

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