On 3 August, Malta International Airport plc announced the July 2010 traffic statistics. After reporting a 10.3% growth in passenger numbers during the first half of 2010, MIA registered a 15.8% rise in passenger movements during the month of July – representing a record high of 401,952 movements. Passenger departures during the month of July amounted to 192,831 passengers (July 2009: 166,452). During the first seven months of the year passenger movements climbed 11.5%. This strong growth in passenger numbers was mainly due to the 9.2% increase in the seat capacity following the additional routes being serviced by several airlines including Ryanair, Easyjet, AirMalta, Norwegian and Bmibaby as well as the improved average seat load factor to 69%.
In a Company Announcement the airport operator explained that in July 2010 alone, aircraft movements and seat capacity grew by 10.8% and 12% respectively over the corresponding period in 2009 whilst the seat load factor climbed to 77.1% from the 74.6% registered in July 2009. MIA also said that all core markets (with the exception of Germany) registered significant increases with Spain, Italy and France growing by 41.5%, 31% and 17.5% respectively whilst the UK market rose by 5.2%. On the other hand, the German market registered a drop of 1%.
Last month MIA had raised its passenger forecast to 8% which should result in total passenger movements of 3.15 million in 2010 – a new record high for MIA following the previous record in 2008. MIA’s CEO Mr Julian Jaegar had explained that some of the new routes which started this summer will also continue during the winter months. The flights include those of Ryanair to Bournemouth (UK), Leeds-Bradford (UK), Billund (Denmark), Krakow (Poland), Bologna (Italy), Seville (Spain), Marseille (France), Valencia (Spain); Bmibaby to East Midlands (UK); Easyjet to Rome Fiumicino (Italy), Milan Malpensa (Italy) and Liverpool (UK). The CEO also revealed that Easyjet will start operating a flight to Belfast (Northern Ireland) from February 2011.