Yorick Jansens

Bumper year for passenger traffic at Brussels Airport

2019 was a record year for passengers at Brussels Airport.  26.4 million passengers passed through the airport in 2019.

Passenger totals are up 2.8%, while the number of flights was cut by 0.4%.  The airport says it benefited as a result of its enhanced role as hub for the Star Alliance of airline companies.  The demise of Fly bmi and WOW air, the collapse of Thomas Cook and the dispute at the air traffic control agency Skeyes affected activity at the airport in a negative way.

Over the past decade passenger totals have risen from 17 to 26.4 million, while there wasn’t any big increase in flights. Airport CEO Arnaud Feist says this proves activities can grow without impacting the environment.  He points to the use of bigger planes that are fuller than before and are more environmentally friendly.

Freight traffic fell by 8.8% last year dropping to 667,000 tons. The decrease was most pronounced in the most market sensitive sector of freight transport. Express services too lost volume as a result of the industrial conflict at Skeyes and the national strike in February.

The number of freight flights dropped by 2.2%, while there was no change in the number of passenger flights.  Planes were fuller carrying 130 passengers on average instead of 127 in 2018.