Ontario Airports Investments

Over 1.4 million passengers passed through Brussels Airport in January

46,000 tonnes of air cargo transported 

In January, Brussels Airport welcomed over 1.4 million passengers, a 6% increase on January 2023. Passenger numbers were influenced by the second week of the Christmas holidays, which saw more arriving than departing passengers. Flown cargo volumes also grew by 6% totalling 46,000 tonnes. 

Passengers: +6% compared to January 2023

In January, Brussels Airport welcomed 1,403,192 passengers, an increase of 6% compared to January 2023. The end of the Christmas holidays at the beginning of the month meant that more passengers arrived than departed. The suspension of flights to Tel Aviv last October continues to have a negative impact on passenger numbers. There was also a negative impact from the short strike at Brussels Airlines and above all from the winter conditions at German airports in January, which led to temporary closures.

The share of departing transfer passengers was 17%, a slight fall due to the decrease in the number of transfer passengers within Europe compared to the increase in the number of intercontinental passengers, which is more in line with Brussels Airport’s objectives as a hub.

The top 10 destination countries in January were respectively Spain, Germany, Italy, Morocco, Turkey, Switzerland, the United States, France, the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates.

Flown cargo volumes: up 6% compared with January 2023

In January, overall freight volumes at Brussels Airport rose by 3% compared to January 2023, reaching 55,051 tonnes.

Flown cargo volumes grew by 6%, totalling 46,376 tonnes.

The full freighter segment saw a robust upturn of 15%, while belly cargo on passenger aircraft rose by 19%, thanks to the increase in passenger flights. Express services fell by 9% and trucked cargo volumes by 9%.

The main import regions are Asia (which recorded a sizeable increase of 112% compared to January 2023), Africa (-0.5%) and North America (-16%). The main export region is also Asia (-6%), followed by North America (-21%) and Africa (-11%).

Flight movements: 3% increase compared to January 2023

In January, the number of flight movements increased by 3% to 13,508. The number of passenger flights increased by 5% compared to 2023. There were on average 128 passengers per flight in January 2024, one more than in 2023. The number of cargo flights decreased by 6% largely due to the drop in the number of express cargo flights.




Birmingham Airport (BHX) is halfway through more than £10m of aircraft stand upgrades to make its operation more efficient and reliable for customers.

The project is making all the stands on BHX’s South Terminal capable of accommodating Airbus 321 and Boeing 737 aircraft, which many airlines use.

Andrew Holl, Airfield Operations Director at BHX, said: “Standardising these stands means, rather than having to wait for the right type of stand to become available, if any stand is free we can send an incoming aircraft straight to it.

“That makes our operation simpler and more resilient, reducing the chance of delays for customers and enabling us to process people on and off aircraft more efficiently. This investment is a key element of our growth plan to 18 million customers a year by 2033.

The work involves reconfiguring existing aircraft parking areas, including power, lighting and stand indication, to dimensions which suit A321 and B737-size aircraft. The existing taxiway has been realigned with new lighting to allow the creation of more stands close to the terminal. This project is due to be complete in summer 2024.

The aircraft stands project is part of £300m of capital investment over the next decade to make BHX capable of serving 18m customers a year by 2033, when it also aims to have become a carbon-net zero airport.

For further information on its journey to 2033, see BHX’s ‘We’re on our way’ video

BHX customer numbers exceed pre-pandemic levels  

Customer volumes at Birmingham Airport (BHX) last month exceeded 2019 levels for the first time.

In October this year 1,106,000 customers travelled through the Midlands transport hub compared to 1,101,000 in October 2019.

Tom Screen, aviation director for BHX, said: “Last month our customer numbers were 100.4% of what they were October 2019 – officially the first month we’ve surpassed pre-pandemic numbers, having been hovering in the high nineties for quite a while.

“It’s good to hit this milestone as we continue to recover from Covid. With more routes, more airlines and more based aircraft, it’s no surprise we’re seeing more customers.

“Meanwhile construction of our state-of-the-art new security hall is due to be complete by June 2024. This is part of £300m of upgrades to BHX planned in the coming decade. We’re on our way to becoming a bigger, better, greener airport for our customers.”

In 2019/20 BHX served more than 12m customers. Then Covid struck, reducing customers volumes by more than 90% to just 1m in 2020/21.

In 2021/22, with Covid still wreaking havoc, customer volumes rose slightly to 3m.

When the Government reopened the borders in March 2022, customers surged back. In 2022/23 BHX customer volumes totaled 10.5m.

This year, 2023/24, BHX expects to draw level or even exceed 2019/20 numbers.