In January–June this year Riga Airport handled 2.22 million passengers, or the same number of passengers as in the whole of 2020, according to the operational data on the airport's performance in the first half of the year.
In June, the airport handled almost 550 thousand passengers, a decrease of 28 percent compared to June 2019. The reduction rate of passenger numbers has fallen below 30 % for the first time after the crisis caused by the pandemic.
“The post-COVID-19 recovery in the sector is now relatively rapid. In June, we are less than a third behind our pre-pandemic levels. Although the share of transit passengers in Riga has dropped from 30 to 17 % since the ban on flights to Russia and Belarus, we have been able to compensate for this reduction with a wide and convenient range of direct summer destinations, which is already very close to what we offered before the pandemic. Moreover, we have taken care of recruiting the necessary staff in time – the Airport currently employs more staff than before the pandemic, and Riga Airport is currently not significantly affected by the staff shortage observed in large European airports," says Laila Odiņa, Chairperson of the Board of Riga Airport.
Half of all passengers or 279 thousand in June were carried by the national airline “airBaltic”, which also operated the largest number of flights – 2713 flights (53 %), while almost 30 % or 162 thousand passengers used the airline “Ryanair”, which operated 971 flights or around 20 % of all flights.
The Russian-induced war in Ukraine and international flight bans have had a significant impact on air cargo traffic, with cargo turnover at Riga Airport reaching 1`449 tonnes in June. In six months, almost 11 thousand tonnes of cargo were handled, which is 18 % less than in the first half of 2019 and 11 % less than in the same period last year.
Riga Airport is a rapidly growing air traffic hub in the Northern Europe, which connects the Baltic States with the European business centres and popular recreation destinations. Being aware of our role and responsibility in the Latvian economy, Riga Airport is developing sustainable services and infrastructure, caring for employees and environment, keeping pace with the society and local community. By joining Net Zero 2050 initiative, Riga Airport has made a commitment to achieve climate neutrality by 2050.