Regional airports in South Africa see passenger numbers climb

Airports Company South Africa, which operates a number of regional and major airports across South Africa has released its Aviation Barometer for the first quarter 2018.

The barometer revealed that more than 40 million passengers were processed through the nine airports for the first time in the financial year to the end of March 2018, a figure achieved in spite of “more modest” passenger figures for the months of January to March, which saw growth of 2.48% compared to the same period in 2017.

The company reported that the six regional airports (Bram Fischer International, Port Elizabeth International, Upington International, East London Airport, George Airport and Kimberley Airport) saw total passenger growth of 3.78% in the year.

George Airport was highlighted by the company as the “standout performer” with passenger growth of 8.5%, passing the 800,000 passenger mark for the first time.

Across all the airports in the first quarter of 2018, domestic arrivals experienced an increase of 79,540 passengers, a rise of 2.36% from the previous year, while domestic departures rose by 91,499, a 2.70% increase from the same period last year.

While international arrivals from January to March 2018 were up at the airports by 3.68% and departures were up by 2.10%, regional movements were down.

Covering Namibia, Botswana, Lesotho and Swaziland, regional arrivals in the first quarter decreased by 1.55% to 119,602 passengers, while regional departures also decreased by 1.03% to 122,135 passengers.

O.R Tambo International Airport remains Africa’s largest and busiest airport with a total of 21.23 million passengers in the financial year, while Cape Town International Airport continued to attract international travellers, experiencing a growth of almost 10% in the period from January to March.

Meanwhile, King Shaka International Airport experienced the highest growth, with passenger numbers increasing by 7.7% to 5.64 million for the financial year.

Mark Howells, publisher

Image copyright: Airports Company South Africa

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