71 percent fewer flight passengers in 2020
Thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, last year was a terrible one for air travel. The number of passengers that flew to and from the Netherlands decreased by a massive 71 percent last year, Statistics Netherlands reported on Monday.
In total, 23.6 million flight passengers started or ended their journey at the five national airports in 2020. A year prior, the number of air travelers lay at 81.2 million.
First signs of air travel slowing down began in March when the initial coronavirus regulations were set. In April and May, passenger flights were nearly completely stopped, but began to pick up again slowly during the summer months.
The country’s biggest airport, Schiphol, saw 71 percent fewer passengers at 20.9 million travelers making their way through its gates. Eindhoven suffered the smallest setback at a 69 percent decrease in passengers.
The Groningen Airport saw the biggest loss at a 90 percent decrease between 2019 and 2020, followed by Maastricht at 81 percent and Rotterdam at 77 percent.
Due to the pandemic restricting intercontinental travel to a large extent, flights within the EU saw a slight increase of 1.5 percent. The most popular destinations were the United Kingdom, Spain and Italy, same as in 2019.
The total number of flights decreased by 50 percent, due to a 71 percent increase in cargo flights.