Ontario Airports Investments

Almost 2.6 million passengers at Brussels Airport in August


Almost 2.6 million passengers at Brussels Airport in August

Brussels Airport has decidedly broken all records this summer with more than 5.2 million passengers in July and August 2018 versus 5 million in the summer of 2017. After the month of July with the largest number of passengers ever recorded, Brussels Airport welcomed almost 2.6 million passengers in August, up 3.4% on the same month last year. On the other hand, freight recorded a 7% increase on August 2017, in particular due to the growth in belly cargo and the full-freighter segment.


In August this year, Brussels Airport welcomed almost 2.6 million passengers, which is 3.4% more than in August 2017. After July, it is the second time this year that Brussels Airport has welcomed more than 2.5 million passengers in a single month. This healthy growth can mainly be attributed to the success of leisure flights, in particular towards destinations such as Turkey, Egypt and Tunisia.

We also note the continued growth of long-haul traffic, which progressed by 16% compared to August 2017, principally in Asia and the Golf region thanks to new destinations (Hong Kong, Shenzhen and Shanghai), as well as to the increase in frequency and capacity of flights to Dubai, Bangkok and Doha.

The number of originating passengers increased by 5.3% compared to the same period in the previous year. The number of transfer passengers is down by 4.8% on August 2017, due to the decrease in the number of flights by Brussels Airlines.

The growth during the second half of August has been positively influenced by the passengers leaving for the annual Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia. The traffic for the month of August was, however, negatively impacted by the Ryanair strike.


In August, the freight volume at Brussels Airport grew by 7% compared to August 2017. Belly cargo continues its growth, with a strong increase of 17.4%. Amongst other things, this is explained by the arrival of new long-haul flights to Asia and the Gulf by companies such as Hainan, Cathay Pacific and Emirates.

The segment of full cargo flights recorded an increase of 4.3% compared to the same month last year, thanks especially to some new routes and customers such as Latam and Atlas Air. Trucked air freight, mainly imports, also see a healthy growth of 11.3% compared to August 2017. The total tonnage of express service freight remains quite stable (-1.1%).

In August, the volume of goods exports continued its growth with South America recording an increase of 81%, thanks to direct flights operated since April by Latam destined for Brazil and Chile. However, it is the imports coming from Asia that particularly make the difference with very strong growth.


The number of flight movements has remained stable (+0.2%) compared to August last year.

Due to the decrease in the number of passenger flights, the use of larger aircraft and an improved occupancy rate, the average number of passengers per flight went from 130 in August 2017 to a record average of 135 passengers per flight in 2018.