Romanian airports posted a 8.2 percent increase in passenger numbers in the first quarter of this year, to 4.36 million, a record high due to international flights, while domestic passenger traffic declined, according to figures released by the National Institute of Statistics (INS).
Total passenger numbers on the 16 Romanian airports have increased from 4.02 million in Q1 2017 to 4.36 million in Q1 2018.
International passenger traffic rose by 10.6 percent year-on-year, to 3.74 million, and the number of passengers carried with domestic flights declined by 4.3 percent, to 613,152, official data show.
Henri Coandă International Airport, controlled by state-owned National Company Aeroporturi București, announced its passenger traffic increased in the first quarter of this year by 6 percent to a record of 2.75 million.
The second airport of Romania by passenger traffic is Cluj Napoca International Airport, with 558,226 passengers in Q1 2018 (+8 percent year-on-year), followed by Timișoara International Airport (364,944, +2.7 percent) and Iași International Airport (235,292, +1.3 percent).
In 2017, Romanian airports posted a 23.3 percent increase in passenger numbers, to 20.2 million, a record high due to both international and domestic flights.
Airport passenger numbers soared in Romania in the last few years due to income rise, cheap flights offered by low-cost companies and poor infrastructure across the country.
In the last couple of years, low-cost companies like Wizz Air, Blueair and Ryanair entered domestic flights market in Romania, controlled for years by state-owned Tarom, trying to benefit from rising appetite for flights between the large urban areas.
But lack of investments in increasing airports capacity is already affecting passenger’s comfort, especially in Henri Coandă International Airport.