In the past year, air traffic has been marked by restrictions on border crossings and other restrictive measures intended to contain the coronavirus pandemic. Despite the slow lifting of restrictions on travel around the world, the demand for and number of flights to and from Ljubljana Airport increased, especially in the second half of the year. In the busiest months (July and August), Ljubljana Airport was connected to the rest of the world by 17 regular airlines, while a significant share of flights were charter flights in the summer. In 2021, 430,943 passengers passed through Ljubljana Airport, up 47.6% on 2020. Cargo traffic amounted to 28,383 tons, up 22.6% on 2020.
“We are pleased with the recovery in the second half of the year, as the traffic at the end of the year was actually a little higher than we expected. Considering the current predictions by airlines for 2022, we can look forward to an even greater increase in traffic growth. The present estimates mean we should welcome twice as many passengers in the new terminal than we did last year,“ commented Dr. Babett Stapel, Managing Director of Fraport Slovenija, on the traffic developments.
Although the health situation deteriorated again from October onwards, flight operations in the last months of the year remained relatively stable, without any major changes due to the epidemic. "In order not to endanger this position at a time when the epidemic is again turning the world upside down, the prolongation of the State promotion scheme for airlines is necessary even more than ever," Stapel said.
At present, 12 airlines connect Ljubljana Airport with 13 destinations, and the flight forecasts for the coming summer season are also promising. According to current predictions, the season will include some novelties and bring back to Ljubljana Airport some connections that were suspended because of the epidemic. The existing connections should be joined by the following:
- Transavia France with flights to Paris Orly,
- Finnair with flights to Helsinki,
- Lufthansa to Munich,
- British Airways to London Heathrow,
- Iberia to Madrid,
- Windrose to Kiev and
- Israir to Tel Aviv.
The main acquisition of the past year was undoubtedly the new passenger terminal, which opened its doors on the first of July. The Managing Director, Dr. Babett Stapel, sees Fraport Slovenija’s investment in the new terminal as a "long-term investment which will support the recovery of air traffic after the epidemic. Thanks to modern infrastructure, Fraport Slovenija is realising its vision of a modern and efficient regional entry point into Slovenia for all airport users and its stakeholders," she added.
Fraport Slovenija is proud to have completed a new, spacious and modern terminal in the historically most difficult period for aviation, which significantly improves the offer and standard of passenger traffic at the airport. With the new facility, airport passengers and employees were given 10,000 square meters of new space. The old terminal remains partially operational and the latest updates that will connect it to the new part, will be completed by the end of January. This will complete the investment in the new terminal, amounted to € 23 million. In total Fraport Slovenija has invested more than €60 million in the development and modernisation of the airport's basic infrastructure since it became owned by Fraport AG back in 2015.