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Record passenger numbers for 2023

Continued growth also expected this year

Dtm terminal stele

A successful start to the new year: Dortmund Airport takes stock of 2023 and sees a new passenger record with a total of 2,934,516 passengers taking off and landing. Compared to the previous year, the airport managed to increase passenger numbers by around 13.5 percent (2022: 2,586,342 passengers). Even the record from the pre-crisis 2019 year (2,719,563 passengers) was set in November and exceeded by 7.9 percent over the year.

“The traffic figures have significantly exceeded our expectations and confirm the popularity of the airport. Travellers have over 40 destinations to choose from – some of which are unique in Germany. With its growth rates, the airport has not only positioned itself well ahead in the industry comparison, but has also broken its own records and underpinned its position as the third largest airport in North Rhine-Westphalia. The annual result is extremely satisfactory,” summarizes airport managing director Ludger van Bebber.

The period with the strongest growth was the first quarter, with an increase of around 46 percent compared to the previous year . This significant increase can be attributed, among other things, to the fact that traffic volumes were still affected by the impact of the pandemic in the comparable period of 2022. The 2023 summer season was also characterized by particularly strong demand: The number of travellers rose to over 300,000 people for two months in a row – an all-time high for the airport. The ongoing NRW Christmas holidays have also gone smoothly so far.

Katowice and Palma at the top

With over 385,000 passengers, the Polish Katowice established itself as the most popular travel destination in 2023, followed by Palma de Mallorca with almost 200,000 passengers. The destinations Gdansk, Bucharest and Skopje were also very popular. The reasons for travel just as diverse as the destinations on offer: “Kattowitz and Bucharest are not only popular destinations for visiting family and friends, but have also established themselves as popular connections for business travellers. Sunny destinations like Palma particularly attract tourists, and there are quite a few of them - demand in Mallorca is stronger than ever before,” explains Guido Miletic, Head of Airport Services + Marketing & Sales.

In view of the high demand, it is already clear that the German airline Condor will strengthen the Mallorca offerings at Dortmund Airport starting in the summer with three additional weekly departures.

Wizz Air remains Dortmund Airport's strongest partner and has further expanded its already wide range of travel options with the introduction of routes to Yerevan, Brasov and Craiova. In total, almost 1.9 million guests from Dortmund decided to travel with the Hungarian low-cost carrier in 2023.

Since December, Pegasus has also been increasing its airline offering in Dortmund and is operating the popular route to the hub in Istanbul three times a week. “Last year, existing routes became more frequented and at the same time the diversity of travel destinations increased. For 2024, we would like to stay on this path, continue to meet the wishes of passengers and continue the constant expansion of the route network,” adds Guido Miletic.

Outlook for 2024

The developments give an optimistic view of 2024: “We are confident that we can build on the positive trends. Previous forecasts for the growth of the aviation industry are promising and people’s desire to travel is unbridled,” explains Ludger van Bebber. For 2024, the airport is aiming for a passenger volume of well over 3 million travellers.