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Greece Air Traffic Nosedives to 30-year Low in 2020

Herakleio Airport. Photo source: Hellenic Civil Aviation Authority (HCAA)

Air traffic to Greece in 2020 dropped to a record 30-year low of 19.7 million arrivals as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and related restrictions, the Hellenic Civil Aviation Authority (HCAA) said on Wednesday.

More specifically, according to HCAA data released, total – domestic and international – arrivals for the whole of 2020 declined by 69.3 percent. HCAA analysts cite the tight measures worldwide for the figure which it said fell to 1991 levels, back when Greek airports handled 19.6 million passengers.

HCAA added that for 10 consecutive months in 2020 all airports across Greece were in the negative.

According to 12-month data for 2020:

– Greek airports handled a total of 19.7 million passengers in 2020 down by 69.3 percent compared to 64.1 million passengers in 2019 

– a total of 240,398 flights – 119,317 domestic and 121,081 international – touched down at Greece’s airports marking a 46.4 percent decline against 448,600 flights in 2019.

In December, total – domestic and international – traveler traffic dropped by 85 percent to 376,001. In the same month last year, Greek airports handled 376,001 passengers down by 85 percent against 2,503,206 in 2019. At the same time, the number of flights fell by 58.6 percent to 9,722 from 23,509 in 2019. International arrivals in December 2020 dropped by 88.1 percent to 88,744 from 743,014 arrivals in 2019.

According to global aviation data firm Cirium, Covid-19 wiped out 21 years of global passenger traffic growth sending it back to 1999 levels.

Eurocontrol said that in the most optimistic scenario, world air traffic is forecast to return to 2019 levels in 2024.

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