We checked the traffic of more than 100 airports and compared it to pre-COVID volume. Here are the results. Find out which airports are impacted heavily and which airports were able to increase traffic volume — despite the pandemic.

COVID-19 Impact On Airport Trafic – Analysis of 100+ Airports

We analyzed the traffic of more than 100 airlines worldwide to check how they performed compared to pre-pandemic traffic. In detail, we analyzed the number of flights in June 2021 and compared it to June 2019. As a result, we clustered the airports according to traffic increase or decline. Here’s what’s contained in detail:

Contents:
Airports That Increase Traffic
Airports That Maintained Traffic
Airports With >5% – 25% Traffic Decline
Airport With >25% – 40% Traffic Decline
Airports With >40% – 60% Traffic Decline
Airports With More Than 60% Traffic Decline

Airports That Increased Traffic

You may wonder if there are airports that operate more flights than pre-COVID. Well, there are. However, it seems to be a Chinese phenomenon. So let’s talk about the facts first. All airports on the list below increased their traffic by more than 5% compared to June 2019.

Moreover, we only show airports with a considerable amount of flights (3,000+). As you can see, 16 out of 17 airports are located in China. Moreover, most of the Chinese airports are secondary stations that operate 4,000 – 6,000 flights.

But: The airport with the most significant increase in traffic isn’t a Chinese one. Instead, Russia’s Sochi managed to skyrocket its traffic by 45%. Therefore, Sochi is the airport with the biggest gain compared to July 2019.

IATAAirportCountryFlights June ’21Flights June ’19Difference
AERSochi4,1112,83245%
HETHohhot6,9494,85343%
CKGChongqing16,04912,59927%
KWEGuiyang8,2636,60725%
XNNXining3,6163,01520%
SYXSanya5,2704,43019%
INCYinchuan4,4373,74019%
NGBNingbo3,8513,30616%
KHNNanchang4,4303,82916%
CSXChangsha9,1747,94615%
TYNTaiyuan4,7694,25012%
CGQChangchun4,3033,89211%
TNAJinan5,5795,23010%
LHWLanzhou5,6355,12510%
HAKHaikou6,4455,86910%
TSNTianjin7,2086,6189%
XIYXi’an15,15014,1797%
COVID-19 Impact On Airport Trafic – Airports With Increased Traffic
Sochi Airport Increased Traffic by 45% – By Alexander V. Solomin

Airports That Maintained Traffic

The below lists airports that maintained the pre-COVID traffic level. Maintained in this context means the airport increased or decreased its traffic by 5%. Due to the enormous volatility caused by COVID, we consider 5% as pretty stable.

Once again, the vast majority of airports are located in China. Overall, 14 out of 18 airports are Chinese. Besides that, we have two airports from the United States: Kahului and Salt Lake City. Especially Salt Lake City impressed with 11,000 flights in June. With Seoul Gimpo and Cancun, two other non-China airports complete the list.

IATAAirportCountryFlights June ’21Flights June ’19Difference
CTUChengdu15,50314,7235%
OGGKahului3,5553,3795%
WNZWenzhou3,7643,5905%
WUHWuhan8,3758,0864%
SLCSalt Lake City11,04510,7143%
HRBHarbin6,0715,9362%
CGOZhengzhou8,4068,3641%
GMPSeoul Gimpo6,0666,0430%
NKGNanjing9,2029,1820%
FOCFuzhou4,1864,2091%
URCUrumqi7,4307,5852%
HGHHangzhou10,91511,1912%
ZUHZhuhai3,5873,6843%
NNGNanning4,4434,5753%
TAOQingdao7,3867,6674%
XMNXiamen7,4507,7354%
CUNCancun6,4076,6684%
SHEShenyang5,3475,6275%
COVID-19 Impact On Airport Trafic – Airports With Stable Traffic

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Airports With >5% – 25% Traffic Decline

With the below list, things are starting to get worse. The contained airports recorded a traffic volume decline of >5% – 25%. Unsurprisingly, the number of Chinese airports is much lower. However, with Shanghai (-6%), Kunming (-6%), Dalian (-10%), Shenzhen (-20%), and Shanghai Pudong (-22%), five out of 17 airports are located in China. Nevertheless, since we are now looking at airports that lost traffic, we see many other countries. However, as we will see later, a 5% – 25% reduction is still low compared to other airports.

The details: Besides China’s airports, we have another two Russian airports on the list. St. Petersburg and Moscow Domodedovo recorded a traffic decrease of 8% resp. 13%. Atlanta, one of the world’s biggest airports, had to manage a 22% decrease in flight numbers. Moreover, Seattle, Honolulu, and Charlotte are other U.S. airports on the list.

IATAAirportCountryFlights June ’21Flights June ’19Difference
SHAShanghai Hongqiao10,69111,3316%
KMGKunming13,68214,5356%
CJUJeju7,0397,4906%
CLTCharlotte21,17322,6817%
LEDSt. Petersburg6,3066,8778%
DLCDalian5,9976,67710%
UPGMakassar4,5835,16811%
DMEMoscow Domodedovo7,7448,88313%
SEASeattle-Tacoma16,36419,15015%
VCPSao Paulo Viracopos3,5354,27917%
HNLHonolulu5,4036,66719%
SZXShenzhen11,46714,38420%
OSLOslo3,2964,15421%
SAWIstanbul Sabiha Gokcen7,85210,04922%
ATLAtlanta29,47938,02422%
PVGShanghai Pudong15,06219,43022%
GDLGuadalajara3,7264,93024%
COVID-19 Impact On Airport Trafic – Airports With 5% -25% Traffic Decline

Airport With >25% – 40% Traffic Decline

Let’s move on to the airports that recorded a traffic decline between 25% and 40%. 12 out of 22 airports are located in the United States. Moreover, with Athens, there’s only one European airport on the list. Since we haven’t seen many European airports so far, they might face even more significant downturns.

IATAAirportCountryFlights June ’21Flights June ’19Difference
MSPMinneapolis12,13316,31126%
DTWDetroit12,05616,39226%
MCIKansas City3,5554,86527%
KBPKyiv Borispol2,9854,15428%
RUHRiyadh6,0568,48729%
MEXMexico City12,15017,05029%
LAXLos Angeles19,32427,19529%
CGKJakarta Soekarno12,45917,69730%
PHLPhiladelphia10,73215,36930%
BNEBrisbane5,2637,63131%
SANSan Diego6,1488,96031%
PITPittsburgh3,5025,12132%
IADWashington Dulles6,86510,44934%
ITMOsaka3,7885,81735%
BOGEl Dorado7,62411,83936%
PDXPortland5,2808,28936%
PERPerth2,4763,88836%
RDURaleigh/Durham4,0086,41137%
DOHDoha5,4608,74238%
AKLAuckland3,9166,30938%
ATHAthens6,30710,40139%
BOSBoston10,46117,29039%
DCAWashington National Airport7,21212,05640%
COVID-19 Impact On Airport Trafic – Airports With 25% -40% Traffic Decline

Airports With >40% – 60% Traffic Decline

The airports below are definitely hit hard by the pandemic. Compared to June 2019, these airports recorded a traffic decline of 40% – 60%. As you can easily see, airports from the United States or China are a rarity on this list. On the contrary, the number of European and African airports is growing massively. And, the numbers are pretty devastating: Amsterdam lost 55%, Madrid lost 57%, and Antalya lost 52%. However, many Asian airports that are not located in China face the same challenge as European airports. For example, Tokyo, Delhi, or Hyderabad recorded a traffic decline of 40% – 60% too.

IATAAirportCountryFlights June ’21Flights June ’19Difference
FUKFukuoka4,7638,00741%
GRUSao Paulo Guarulhos5,75910,02543%
CAICairo3,5966,36243%
HNDTokyo Haneda11,73720,81044%
SJCSan Jose Norman3,5036,37845%
ISTIstanbul Ataturk10,00918,59746%
ORYParis Orly5,43510,23247%
JEDJeddah5,07010,01449%
MELMelbourne4,7869,49650%
SFOSan Francisco9,37818,66750%
DELDelhi9,15118,30050%
PMIPalma de Mallorca5,43211,09751%
HYDHyderabad3,5637,27951%
CANGuangzhou9,37119,41852%
AYTAntalya3,1076,53852%
LISLisbon4,4059,55954%
AMSAmsterdam9,33920,55855%
LGANew York LaGuardia6,99315,74956%
MADMadrid7,42017,43457%
WAW Warsaw2,9697,22159%
COVID-19 Impact On Airport Trafic – Airports With 40% -60% Traffic Decline
Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport Terminal 2.jpg
Guangzhou is one of the rare Chinese airports with considerable traffic decline – By Jacky Cheung

Airports With More Than 60% Traffic Decline

And for all of you who were looking for the big European and Asian airports — well, we have them here. The list below contains airports that lost more than 60% of their traffic. Basically, you can find all major European airports on the list: Barcelona, Frankfurt, Milan, Brussels, London, Rome, etc. They all recorded a shocking decline of 60% – 80% in terms of flight traffic.

However, some of the major Asian hubs are hit even harder. Seoul, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Tokyo, and Kuala Lumpur are at the bottom of the list, declining more than 80% and even 90%.

IATAAirportCountryFlights June ’21Flights June ’19Difference
BCNBarcelona5,78215,04262%
FRAFrankfurt8,18221,61762%
MXPMilan3,2368,60962%
SGNHo Chi Minh City3,89510,75864%
BRUBrussels3,0558,88566%
VIEVienna3,85611,75767%
STNLondon Stansted2,4487,79869%
ZRHZurich3,33910,83169%
FCORome Fiumicino4,07414,11771%
CPHCopenhagen3,06211,17773%
ARNStockholm Arlanda2,4829,26373%
LHRLondon Heathrow5,45420,38673%
MUCMunich4,59817,26473%
KWIKuwait1,1315,03478%
HELHelsinki1,7137,67178%
DUBDublin2,09510,29880%
MANManchester1,6548,60381%
SINSingaporeSingapore Flag2,29415,0985%
ICNSeoul Incheon2,23515,38185%
BKKBangkok2,16914,98886%
HKGHong Kong1,52415,09090%
NRTTokyo Narita2,06520,81090%
KULKuala Lumpur1,16016,92493%
COVID-19 Impact On Airport Trafic – Airports With >60% Traffic Decline
KLIA MTB&Tower.jpg
Kuala Lumpur recorded a traffic decline of 93% in June 2021

Used Data

The shown information is based on OAG data and internal data sources.

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Benjamin is a content-maniac, music-lover, aviation-enthusiast, and CEO of Information Design (in this order). His daily business revolves around pioneering solutions to change the way airlines, airports, and aviators use information. His visions are based on expertise gained in more than 15 years in the industry and working with renowned airlines + airports worldwide.

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