Sharp drop in Shannon passengers as other Irish airports see growth

Every Irish airport saw passenger growth in 2017 except for Shannon, which saw a decrease of 5% from January to June.

CSO figures for the second quarter of 2017 saw Cork, Dublin, Knock and Kerry airports all increase their passenger numbers compared to the same period last year.

Dublin increased more than 7% to 7.9 million passengers in the second quarter, while Cork increased about 2% to 637,000. Shannon, which is independent of the Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) unlike Dublin and Cork, saw its numbers for the second quarter fall by 5.5% to 455,000 compared to the same period in 2016, while its traffic from January to the end of June this year fell by 5% overall to 727,000.

A spokesman for Shannon Airport said: “Shannon Airport’s passenger numbers for the period covered by the CSO’s quarterly bulletin from April to June are on a par with last year.

“While there was a decrease in terminal traffic due to a reduction in Stansted services, this was negated by an increase in transit passengers, which are not recorded in CSO figures.”

He added: “Beyond that, the summer season this year has been very positive for Shannon, with a 16% increase in capacity overall compared to the same period last year. The gains included two new Norwegian Air International services to the US from July, a Lufthansa service to Frankfurt and Scandinavian Airlines flights to Stockholm. We are also in ongoing conversations with a number of airlines and look forward to further gains in 2018.”

Kerry Airport saw the biggest jump in its numbers for the second quarter of 2017, increasing 8% to 98,500. Its January to June figures increased more than 5% to 157,000.

Knock increased 4% to 208,000 in the second quarter, and was up 6% to 342,000 in the six months to the end of June. In the first half of 2017, 16 million passengers travelled through the main Irish airports, an increase of 5.3% compared with the same period in 2016.

Almost 68,000 flights were handled by Ireland’s main airports in the second quarter of 2017. Dublin accounted for 83% of all flights, while Cork handled just under 8%.

For Cork Airport, the top three routes were London-Heathrow, London-Stansted and Amsterdam-Schiphol.

The top route for Shannon was London-Heathrow, the top route for Knock was London-Stansted and the top route for Kerry was London-Luton.

Ireland’s main airports handled almost 39,000 tonnes of freight in the second quarter of 2017.

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