Fall in the number of passengers (-69%) and aircraft movements (-54%) at Geneva Airport in 2020


In 2020, as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, passenger traffic fell by 68.8% at Genève Aéroport, while the number of aircraft movements fell by 53.6%. Meanwhile, freight activity saw a decline of 37.7% compared to 2019.

Over the course of 2020, Genève Aéroport welcomed 5,600,884 passengers, i.e. 68.8% less than in 2019, as a result of the pandemic, which severely hindered air transport for many months (flight cancellations, border closures, entry restrictions, mandatory quarantines, etc.). Such low figures have not been recorded in several decades. In 2019, Genève Aéroport welcomed 17,926,625 passengers; in this respect, passenger numbers are not expected to return to 2019 levels until 2024.

Alongside this, over the last twelve months, the total number of landings and take-offs have fallen by 53.6% to 86,353 movements. A year earlier, the number of aircraft movements had fallen just 0.6% from 2018.

During the crisis, several airlines favoured the use of latest generation aircraft, which are more economical in terms of operating costs. Contributing to limiting noise emissions, aircraft classified as category 5, which are less noisy and require less fuel (including the Bombardier CSeries, A 320neo, A 350 and the Boeing 787), represented 22.8% of airliner and charter movements compared to 18.7% in 2019.

Movements after 22:00 saw a significant drop of 71.7% in 2020. Notably, unplanned take-offs by airliners and charters after 22:00 have fallen by 82%. In 2019, movements after 22:00 (i.e. landings and take-offs) decreased by 5.2% compared to 2018.

Declining freight activity

Airfreight activity on the Genève Aéroport’s platform saw a significant decrease of 37.7% (-10.9% in 2019), dropping to 52,833 tonnes, despite cargo operations continuing to be successful during the pandemic –particularly for the transport of medical equipment. Export freight fell by 40.2%, while a drop in import traffic of 27.2% was recorded. Only express courier companies (DHL Express, FedEx/TNT and UPS) continued to perform well due to an autonomous logistics organisation, which enabled a traffic increase of 4.15% in 2020, or 14,961 tonnes.

The number of countries served by Genève Aéroport has decreased from 149 destinations in 2019 to 147 destinations in 2020. From 15 July 2020, several companies resumed regular intercontinental flights (Emirates, Etihad, Ethiopian Airlines and Air Canada in particular).

The market shares of the top ten airlines for the past year break down as follows: easyJet (45.7%), SWISS (13.8%), British Airways (5.5%), Air France (4.2%), KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (2.9%), Iberia (2.4%), TAP Portugal (2.2%), Brussels Airlines (2%), Turkish Airlines (1.7%) and Emirates (1.5%).

The airport’s 2020 annual report, financial statements and list of destinations will be made public on 23 March 2021.



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