Malta International Airport’s Passenger Traffic Expected to Exceed 7 Million Mark in 2019
- 2018 traffic reaches 6,808,177 passenger movements; a 13.2 per cent growth over 2017
- 2019 traffic expected to grow by 5.8 per cent over 2018 to reach 7.2 million passengers
- 18 new developments for summer 2019, including flights to Doha operated by Qatar Airways
- 2019 will be a very important year in terms of investment in the airport campus
Having just closed off another record year, Malta International Airport is now forecasting an increase of 5.8 per cent in traffic for 2019, driving passenger movements up to 7.2 million. This forecast as well as highlights from 2018, were presented at the company’s yearly traffic press conference.
Malta International Airport reported a 47-per-cent increase in traffic in the last three years, with passenger movements for 2018 reaching an all-time high of 6,808,177.
The airport’s most popular markets during 2018 were the United Kingdom, Italy, Germany, France and Spain. Following the introduction of better connections with these countries, the airport’s top five markets registered varying degrees of growth over 2017, ranging from a humble 2.0 per cent to a more impressive 37.8 per cent.
“While our 100-destination summer schedule was an important contributing factor to these numbers, it is encouraging to see that, for the fifth consecutive year, our shoulder and winter months have outpaced the peak summer months in terms of growth,” commented MIA CEO Alan Borg, whilst thanking the airport team and all stakeholders for their maintained efforts in making Malta a year-round destination.
He went on to note that nine airlines had either extended routes originally introduced in summer into the present winter season or else increased flight frequencies on certain routes, highlighting their confidence in the island’s potential as a holiday destination even in the off-peak months.
Looking ahead to summer 2019, Mr Borg noted that the schedule for the season will be an exciting one. Featuring 18 new developments, including flights to Amman and the launch of daily operations to Doha by newcomer Qatar Airways, this schedule will broaden the choice of destinations for locals, even outside of Europe.
“The Government of Malta, through the Ministry for Tourism and the Malta Tourism Authority, works collaboratively with Malta International Airport on a strategy of growth and route network expansion. By means of the significant investment programme which is being rolled out, Malta will continue to improve airline connectivity across neighbouring and strategically important areas,” said Minister for Tourism Konrad Mizzi, while lauding the positive results registered by Malta International Airport.
Malta Tourism Authority Executive Chairman, Dr Gavin Gulia congratulated Malta Airport upon achieving outstanding results, which contributed directly to another record year for tourism, and pledged the authority’s commitment to keep working with the airport to ensure sustainable airline seat capacity growth in future.
With over €20 million earmarked for 2019 projects, the airport campus will continue to develop infrastructurally, paving the way for more ambitious long-term developments such as the expansion of the terminal building. The company will be working on finalising plans for this project, which will see the terminal occupy a larger footprint and offer better facilities, throughout 2019.
Complementing this landside project, the multi-million development of Apron 10 is expected to provide Malta International Airport with aircraft capacity stability for the long term. Plans for the development of this aircraft parking area, which will cater for 7 additional stands for Code C aircraft, four stands for Code E, or a combination of both, are in the works.
The company is currently working on its 20-million-euro parking village project, which will introduce 1,300 covered parking spaces on the airport campus by 2020, and has recently issued a call for the submission of design concepts for the 40-million-euro SkyParks 2 development