Ostend-Bruges airport announces annual results and plans for 2017

Airport Ostend-Bruges has announced its annual results and various plans for 2017.

To address the growing number of destinations and in order to meet the additional capacity from leisure operator TUI, the airport has decided to partner up with Erasmus Catering Services and invest in the airside departure hall while rolling out an innovative F&B concept.

Results 2016 Airport Ostend-Bruges

Overall passenger numbers for 2016 increased by 57.6% compared to 2015. Each month of 2016 had more passengers compared to the same month in 2015, reaching a peak for the months of March and April when the airport welcomed 100.000 additional passengers. Several airlines, including TUI, operated a high number of flights to & from Ostend in those months as an alternative to Brussels Airport, which was closed or had limited capacity in the aftermath of the attacks.

Cargo traffic increased by 32% relative to 2015 but the number of movements decreased by 8.4%.

20 years TUI Airport Ostend-Bruges – 20 destinations

In 2016 TUI celebrated its 20th anniversary at Airport Ostend-Bruges. Alicante was the very first destination that TUI served out of Ostend Airport back in 1996, and it still proves to be a huge success in 2016. It also is the most popular destination from Ostend (accounting for 30.580 passengers in 2016).

In April 2017, TUI will launch its 20th destination from Airport Ostend-Bruges with two flights per week to Eskisehir in Turkey. “The popularity of Ostend Airport is growing and now reaches far beyond the borders of West Flanders. Also in the region of East Flanders, Hainaut and even Nord-Pas-de-Calais in France, travellers are already discovering the strengths of our small, easily accessible airport”, says Dirk Van Holsbeke, General Manager TUI Belgium.

Future Plans

The impact of 22 March at regional airports and the increasing demand of passengers to fly from regional airports will lead to major investments in 2017. The exterior of the terminal will finally get a much-needed facelift and around 1 million euros will be invested in the new airside departure hall. The security zone will be increased, a VIP lounge will created and airside passengers will be able to choose from several catering and shopping facilities. Therefor, the airport will team up with Erasmus Catering Services, a Rotterdam based company with almost 80 year of experience in the catering world, both in terms of airline catering as well as pubs and restaurants.

Marcel Buelens, CEO of Ostend-Bruges airport: “We are extremely pleased to partner up with Erasmus Catering Services. They have a lot of experience with airports and airlines and I am confident that we will be able to raise this airport to the next level, 2.0 so to speak”. Furthermore, the airport will implement the necessary tools to expand its cargo and general aviation activities.

Major Johan Vande Lanotte: “The city of Ostend follows the developments of Ostend Airport very closely. The airport management meets with me and the Economic House every three weeks. We see that progress is being made on several areas and this is very important to us because it creates additional direct and indirect employment.”

Cherry on the cake

In the past year, many local inhabitants have wondered what would happen to the former restaurant Charles Lindberg. Erasmus Catering Services has made the decision to invest in this building. After a thorough renovation of the current building a catering production unit will be constructed. This unit will be in charge of the supply of catering items to aircraft and the F&B section of the airside departure hall.













Cargo (tonnes)




Record Years


Best month 2016
April (96.448 passengers)

Best destination 2016
Alicante (TUI)

Number of direct employees in 2016 

4 January 2017


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