Riga International Airport in 2011 welcomed half a million passengers more than in the previous year breaking another record of passenger traffic in a calendar year. „By handling five million passengers per year we have officially joined the ranks of medium-sized airports and internationally considered a notch above the small airports,” said Arnis Luhse, Chairman of the Board of Riga International Airport.
The most popular destinations among the travellers last year were London, Moscow, Helsinki, Oslo and Stockholm. Out of the total number of passengers last year, 66% travelled by the national carrier airBaltic and 20% - by the airline Ryanair. In comparison with 2010 the number of passengers in 2011 was substantially boosted by the airlines Wizz Air (+ 62%), Finnair (+40%) and Aeroflot (+34%).
Notably, the share of transit/transfer passengers in the total number of the passengers handled last year was 37% and the most popular transit/transfer destinations were Vilnius, Tallinn, Helsinki, Moscow and Berlin.
„There are still more passengers departing from Riga than arriving here. Last year the difference between the departing and arriving passengers was 21 thousand,” Arnis Luhse, Chairman of the Board of Riga International Airport pointed out.
In 2011 2 563 970 passengers departed from Riga and 2 542 956 passengers arrived at our airport.
„Riga International Airport keeps working on the development of the route network in order to provide travellers with a variety of easily accessible holiday and business destinations,” said Arnis Luhse, Chairman of the Board of Riga International Airport, and added that he hoped to maintain passenger traffic in 2012 at the same level as last year.
This year the airport looks forward to the arrival of a new airline whereas Ryanair will open flights to Karlsruhe in Germany. Several carriers are planning to increase flight frequency to the existing destinations: airBaltic - to Vienna, Zurich, Munich and Amsterdam, Lufthansa – to Frankfurt, Aeroflot – to Moscow.
In 2011 Riga International Airport welcomed 5.1 million passengers or 9.5% more than in the previous reporting period. Last year saw the rise of aircraft handled by 7% (72 855 aircraft) while cargo handling increased by 3% (12 665 t).
Six new destinations were opened from Riga Airport in 2011; to date 15 airlines operate at the airport carrying passengers to 82 destinations.