Air passenger transport - monthly statistics

Data extracted in October 2020.

Planned article update: 19 May 2021


In 2019, air passenger transport in the EU increased by 4 % compared with 2018.

Austria, Latvia and Hungary recorded the highest increase in air passenger transport among the EU countries in 2019.

Share of and change in EU-27 monthly passengers carried in 2018 and 2019 (million passengers).
For more details about the data presented, please see the notes in the 'Data sources and availability' section.
Source: Eurostat (avia_paoc)

This article describes the recent monthly development of passenger transport by air in the European Union (EU). A distinction is made between national (domestic), intra and extra-EU transport, and the article also looks at the importance of airports.

Full article

Development of air passenger transport at EU level

In the course of 2018 and 2019, the upward trend already observed in passenger transport by air for previous years was confirmed at EU level. An increase of 6.1 % was recorded between 2017 and 2018 and the figures for 2019 indicate already a year-on-year rise of 3.8 % compared with 2018.

In 2019, international extra-EU transport represented for a half of all passengers carried at EU level, followed by intra-EU transport (around 34 %) and national transport (around 16 %) - see Figure 1.

Figure 1: Share of and change in EU-27 monthly passengers carried in 2018 and 2019 (million passengers)
Source: Eurostat (avia_paoc)

Figure 2 shows that all the months of 2018 displayed an increase on the previous year (ranging from +4.0 % in April to +8.9 % in March). All months of 2019 showed rises compared with the same period in 2018, the largest rise taking place in April (+6.2 % compared with the corresponding month of 2018).

Figure 2: Change in EU-27 monthly passengers carried for 2018 and 2019 (compared to the same month of the previous year) (%).

Source: Eurostat (avia_paoc)

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Air passenger transport at country level

Analysing passenger transport at country level generally confirms the upward trend observed in 2018 and 2019 at EU level, although transport development varies significantly depending on the country considered. For 2019, 24 out of the 27 Member States and 5 extra-EU reporting countries showed an increase in passenger volumes compared with the same period in 2018. Particularly notable is the growth observed for Austria (+14.5 %), Latvia (+10.6 %) and Hungary (+10.0 %) among the EU Member States. At the other end of the scale, decreases were observed in passenger transport for Slovenia (-5.1 %), Bulgaria (-3.5 %) and Sweden (-3.4 %).

Outside the EU, the level of growth differs across countries: on the one hand, the highest increase were registered in Serbia (+16.8 %) while, on the other hand, a large drop was observed for Iceland (-25.4 %) when comparing 2018 and 2019 - see Table 1.

Table 1: Passengers carried per country: monthly data for 2018 and 2019 (thousand)
Source: Eurostat (avia_paoc)

Air passenger transport at airport level

Among the top 30 airports in terms of passenger transport, growths between 2018 and 2019 also differ substantially depending on the airport considered, reflecting the trends observed at country level. For 2019, 25 out of the top 30 airports showed an increase over this period. Milano/Malpensa (+18.9 %) and Wien/Schwechat (+17.1 %) registered the highest rises among the largest airports, followed by Berlin/Tegel (+10.2 %). This contrasts with Stockholm/Arlanda and Köln/Bonn airports, where passenger transport decreased by 4.5 % for both airports between 2018 and 2019 - see Table 2.

Table 2: Passengers handled in top EU-27 airports: monthly data for 2018 and 2019 (thousand)
Source: Eurostat (avia_paoa)

Source data for tables and graphs

Data sources

Definition of 'passengers carried'

All passengers on a particular flight are counted once only and not repeatedly on each individual stage of that flight. This excludes direct transit passengers.

Exclusion of double counting

The national transport (included in total transport at country level) and intra-EU transport aggregates (included in total transport at EU level) have been calculated so as to exclude double counting by taking into account only departure declarations.

Notes on some reporting countries

  • Turkey: only provides flight stage data (Dataset A1) (in which there is no information on passenger carried) and airport declarations (Dataset C1) in which the partner airport is not provided (exclusion of double counting is not possible). The sum of all Turkish airport declarations (available in avia_tf_apal) is used in this publication. As a consequence the national total presented in Table 1 is overestimated (as it is not possible to apply double counting exclusion for national transport).


The content of this statistical article is based on data collected within the framework of the EU air transport statistics Regulation (EC) No 437/2003 on statistical returns in respect of the carriage of passengers, freight and mail by air.

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Air transport (t_avia)
Air transport of passengers (ttr00012)
Air transport of goods (ttr00011)
Air transport (avia)
Air transport measurement - passengers (avia_pa)
Air transport measurement - freight and mail (avia_go)