On Tuesday, 29 December, Riga International Airport welcomed a record number of passengers, exceeding thus the threshold of 5.1 million passengers served in 2011. The lucky passenger – Maris Zarins (Māris Zariņš) arrived at the airport from the flight of the Latvian airline airBaltic from Copenhagen.
The State Secretary of the Ministry of Transport Kaspars Ozolins (Kaspars Ozoliņš), “each year Riga International Airport closes with a new record of passengers served. This is a new achievement and I extend my thanks to the team of the airport as well as the largest carrier at Riga International Airport – the national airlines of Latvia airBaltic, which offers travelling opportunities to more than 60 destinations. The airport has made large investments in modernisation and expansion of the range of services offered to passengers, ensuring thus every precondition for a faster growth of the number of travellers.”
The Chairman of the Board of SJSC Riga International Airport Andris Liepins (Andris Liepiņš), “The overall growth of the national economy along with the increase in household income and the share of expenses spent on travelling has had a beneficial effect on the operation of the airport this year. The comparatively low fuel costs had a positive impact as well. And one should not forget the attractiveness of Riga City and Latvia in general as a travelling destination. The aforementioned factors helped introduction of several new airlines to Riga and opening of routes to new destinations, which in its turn contributed to the constant growth of the number of passengers.”
airBaltic Chief Executive Officer Martin Gauss, “We are delighted to see this passenger record as aviation in Latvia contributes to almost 3% of the gross domestic product and supports 2% of all jobs available in the market. This year, airBaltic supported this by opening 14 new routes for the Baltic sea region – the largest expansion for us since completing our restructuring and achieving profitability. For 2016 our new highlight is Reykjavik, Iceland, and you will also see numerous improvements to our existing network around the Baltic Sea, for example, our flights out of Stockholm Arlanda will operate up to five times daily.”
Riga International Airport presented the lucky passenger with the passenger loyalty card RIX Club and airport souvenirs. The national airline airBaltic granted Maris Zarins a certificate for a flight in business class, cooperation partners of the airport – TAV Airports Holding representative in Latvia SIA (LLC) TAV Latvia, represented by Hakan Uzunosmanoglu, along with subsidiaries of the holding AS (JSC) Riga Airport Commercial Development (ATU Duty Free), Cakes&Bakes Latvia, Havas – gift cards and baskets with gifts.
Riga International Airport will serve 5.16 million passengers in this year. This year the most popular destinations (cities) from Riga International Airport are London, Moscow, Frankfurt, Oslo and Helsinki. Countries passengers from Riga travel to most often are Germany, United Kingdom, Russia, Norway and Finland.
airBaltic provides direct flights from Riga to over 60 destinations, offers easy connections from Riga to destinations within the network of the airline in Scandinavia, Europe, Russia, CIS and the Middle East. In addition, airBaltic offers new direct flights from Tallinn and Vilnius.
For information – Riga International Airport welcomed its five millionth passenger on 21 December 2011, the four millionth passenger – on 21 December 2009, the three millionth passenger – on 10 December 2007, the two millionth passenger – on 17 October 2006, the remarkable first million of passengers was recorded by Riga International Airport on 13 December 2004.
Riga International Airport is the largest air traffic hub in the Baltic States. Flights to 69 destinations are available in winter and to 89 destinations – in summer from Riga International Airport provided by 21 airline.