Domestic air traffic under pressure in many EU countries

Analysis of passenger traffic data across eight of the largest EU countries shows that domestic air travel has been in decline or stagnant in half of them in 2007.

Chart: Domestic passenger growth 2007 v 2006
Source: UK CAA, destatis, DGAC, Assaeroporti, LFV, Avinor, Finavia, AENA

Domestic traffic in 2007 at airports in Finland, France, Sweden and the UK has been consistently below the levels achieved in 2006 whereas domestic traffic last year in Germany, Italy, Norway and Spain has shown a positive trend. Italy and Spain achieved particularly impressive growth rates, though the imminent opening of a high-speed rail link between Barcelona and Madrid could severely impact Spain’s future performance in this area. Missing French data for November and December is unlikely to show positive domestic growth given the industrial unrest which caused major problems at several airports.

Chart: Total airport traffic growth 2007 v 2006
Source: UK CAA, destatis, DGAC, Assaeroporti, LFV, Avinor, Finavia, AENA

In terms of total airport traffic in these eight countries, all of them registered positive growth for the year as a whole. Again Italy and Spain have performed the best over the course of the year with the UK vying with Sweden for the lowest overall growth. The UK’s performance would have been even worse if not for the high growth recorded in August which had more to do with the problems triggered by security alerts in 2006 than with a great summer in 2007.


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