In Ostend, breaking monthly passenger records has become the trend for 2019. Aside from March and April, each month a new record was set. A total of 457 423 passengers made their way through the Ostend airport, a rise of 8.9% from 2018 (419 865 passengers). Antwerp’s summer proved to be the busiest one yet, passing the 300 000 passenger mark in 2019 (306 330). Despite a laborious start to the year, due to a 35% capacity loss from VLM Airlines, we were able to turn the tide. The result is a slight growth from 2018: 2.6% or 289 403 passengers.
The considerable rise in passenger numbers from the past few years has continued on.
One of the reasons for another record year was the launch of the successful Ostend-Moscow connection on March 7th. A high number of bookings proved its popularity. Unfortunately, the connection was temporarily suspended just before summer. The ongoing global issues with the B-737 Max aircraft in the fleet of Pobeda, subsidiary of Aeroflot, are the cause for this abrupt shutdown. Although they presently lack the aircraft to reach their entire network, a resumption of this service has not been ruled out.
Another boost in passenger numbers results from the European competitions in which top Belgian football clubs compete.
Furthermore, ‘general aviation’ (business air travel) has increased as well. It made up for 9% of all flights, a 3% rise from 2018. The brand new NSAC business terminal allows the airport to handle more flights ànd more passengers. Through a beautiful infrastructure and an excellent array of services the NSAC is able to live up to the high expectations of its clientele. The airport projects further growth in this section, along with passenger flights and cargo business.
The cargo transport volume has been under great pressure, not only in Ostend but on a worldwide scale.
A 10.7% dip in volume from 2018 brought us to a total of 24 757 tons.
Ostend airport thusly follows the general trend of the cargo sector. However, we hope to carry over the positive uptick that was registered in the last few weeks of the year. A total of 5 630 tons in December is 13.8% better than last year, and stands as the highest number since 2013; a welcome boost to end the cargo year.
Ostend has added the Italian BCUBE as their third cargo handler, after Aviapartner and Fenair, to optimize the service of its cargo clients.
With the arrival of BCUBE, along with the recent inauguration of the spectacular dismantling hall of the Aerocircular company, the long-awaited reopening of ‘apron 1’ at the airport is a new milestone.
Aerocircular professionally dismantles passenger aircraft. Each part, down to the last screw, is recycled. Each part is repurposed: as a spare part in aviation, as a new application of an existing part or as a secondary raw material. In doing so, Aerocircular not only distinguishes itself in the economic aspect of the business model, it also strives for sustainability. Its activities lie within the circular economy
Marcel Buelens, CEO of International Airport Ostend-Bruges:
“Not only have we stunned our owners, the Egis group, we have recorded our best year since 1966 with these 457 423 passengers. Nearly 5000 more, 53 years later. Only 1965 (466 427) and 1964 (485 534) are to be outdone, a great challenge! We must continue to work with our partners on this economic engine for the region and for Flanders. We would like to give special thanks to our people for their hard work, dedication and continued belief in a beautiful future for the Ostend airport. A thank you also goes out to the LOM board of directors and the city council of Ostend and Middelkerke for their support and positive approach to the cabinet of Mobility led by Minister Lydia Peeters.”
Since April 2019, two new ethnic destinations were put in place by TUI fly: Lublin (Poland) and Enfidha (Tunisia). Other routes such as Tangier, Alicante and Malaga underwent a capacity increase. This additional capacity was able to mitigate the downfall of VLM Airlines.
Never before in Antwerp Airport history had there been such a notable summer! Through July, August and September, a whopping 101 069 travelers passed through the airport, as opposed to 92 043 the previous year. This is an increase of nearly 10% (9.8%).
On September 9th the brand new airline company Air Antwerp and codeshare partner KLM reopened the historic business route Antwerp – London City – Antwerp. Business travelers enjoyed 16 return flights per week, with considerable flexibility. Many business people found their way back to London, as evidenced by the high occupancy rate. The results have proven to be better than anticipated.
The general aviation segment also performed very well. It accounts for 40% of all flights. This allows us to jump into 2020 with plans for infrastructural investments of the two main players in the business travel section of the airport, ASL and Flying Group.
Marcel Buelens, CEO of International Airport Antwerp:
“With 306 330 passengers in 2019, we have already reached our goal for 2024. The best year to date in ‘Deurne’ airport history. 306 330 people who have rewarded us for the many efforts of our staff and who have faith in us and in the fact that Antwerp deserves its own airport. Thank you to everyone on and around the airfield who has made an effort to come here. Thank you to each entrepreneur that has kept believing and investing in the Antwerp Airport. The end is not yet in sight, requests have not ceased to come in. We would also like to thank the LOM board of directors and the city council of greater Antwerp for their support and positive approach to the cabinet of Mobility led by Minister Lydia Peeters.”
Despite the higher occupancy, both airports succeeded in delivering an excellent ‘on time performance’ (OTP), the punctuality with which aircraft take off. An average of 98.3% of flights departed from Antwerp in a timely fashion. Ostend registered an OTP of 95.8%. On a European scale, both airports finish top off the class. Furthermore, travelers enjoy a fluency in procedures, resulting in shorter waiting times at the security check and baggage reclaim.
“I am proud and grateful for everyone’s hard work and I want to thank all the people who mean well for our Flemish airports. We will keep building, at least until the end of 2039 and probably beyond that.This is a perfect opportunity to deliver on a coast tram that stops at Ostend Airport and on a train that no longer passes over Antwerp Airport.”
The month of September closed with a record and almost 10,000 passengers more than September 2018: 34,732 versus 25,108 passengers.
The additional capacity of some ethnic TUI fly destinations brought additional passengers with them. Furthermore, the new business route Antwerp-London City is just as much responsible for the strong growth figures. Air Antwerp did not miss its start. Since 9 September, the airline flies 3 times a day from Monday to Friday to the English capital (ANR-LCY at 7.10 am, 2.15 pm, 5.35 pm). Many business travellers find their way back to the heart of London. A third and final explanation for last month’s increase is an increase in the number of passengers on the business jets.
The month of September thus shattered all records: 38.3% more passengers compared to the same month last year. The third quarter is also the strongest quarter ever; we recorded a 10% growth compared to last year; 101,069 passengers travelled via the airport in July, August and September this year compared to 92,043 passengers last year.
Overall, we are still 4.9% behind compared to 2018 (January-September). However, thanks to the strong third quarter, we expect the gap to narrow in the final months of 2019.
In general, we may conclude that Antwerp Airport is clearly on the rise and that more and more travellers and business people are experiencing this. Good accessibility, being close to home, easy and democratic parking, short walking distances at and around the airport, fast check-in and fast procedures are all advantages of small-scale, regional airports.
For September, the airport again achieved an excellent score in terms of ‘punctual departures’ (97.7%). This is a figure that many airports can only dream of to the great delight of our regular customers.
34,732 in September 2019 compared to 25,108 in September 2018 (+38,3%)
3,462 in September 2019 compared to 2,987 in September 2018 (+15,9%)
316 ton in September 2019 compared to 249 ton in September 2018 (+26,9%)
Comparison between August 2019 and August 2018
33,379 in August 2019 compared to 33,023 in August 2018 (+1,1%)
3,709 in August 2019 compared to 3,641 in August 2018 (+1,9%)
298 ton in August 2019 compared to 261 ton in August 2018 (+14,2%)
Comparison between July 2019 and July 2018
32,958 in July 2019 compared to 33,912 in July 2018 (-2,8%)
3,569 in July 2019 compared to 3,666 in July 2018 (-2,6%)
291 ton in July 2019 compared to 281 ton in July 2018 (+3,6%)
TUI fly will monitor more closely whether passengers actually comply with the rules concerning hand baggage. More and more passengers are travelling with hand baggage that exceeds the official standards in terms of size and weight. Due to the limited space for hand baggage on board, it is almost impossible to store all this baggage safely on many flights. As a result, more and more of the hand baggage is forced to be loaded into the cargo hold, which often leads to dissatisfaction on the part of the traveller.
From now on TUI fly will always perform checks at the check-in desk to ensure that the boarding of the aircraft goes a lot smoother.
More info via https://www.tuifly.be/nl/bagage
Comparison between June 2019 and June 2018
31,429 in June 2019 compared to 30,872 in June 2018 (+1,8%)
3,533 in June 2019 compared to 4,427 in June 2018 (-20,2%)
283 ton in June 2019 compared to 246 ton in June 2018 (+15,0%)
Comparison between May 2019 and May 2018
27,817 in May 2019 compared to 32,129 in May 2018 (-13,4%)
3,258 in May 2019 compared to 4,573 in May 2018 (-28,8%)
235 ton in May 2019 compared to 261 ton in May 2018 (-10,0%)
Comparison between March 2019 and March 2018
17,433 in March 2019 compared to 24,216 in March 2018 (-28%)
2,469 in March 2019 compared to 3,155 in March 2018 (-21,7%)
196 ton in March 2019 compared to 160 ton in March 2018 (-18,4%)
Antwerp, 27 March 2019 – During the year 2018 Antwerp Airport welcomed 298.403 passengers, a growth of 10%.
In 2018 the airport welcomed 298.403 passengers, a strong increase of 10% compared to 2017 when the airport registered 273.167 passengers. Business and training flights are increasing and have had a share of 66% whilst passenger flights only make up 12,6% of all movements.
Because of the bankruptcy of VLM, there’s a decrease in number of scheduled flights in general but a higher occupation degree per airplane at TUI fly.
Having 3 new destinations (Enfidha, Lublin and Tangier), the future looks bright for Antwerp Airport.