Cork Airport welcomed 2.24m passengers in 2022 and is on track for a strong recovery in 2023, according to new figures released on Tuesday.
Passenger satisfaction with the travel experience at Cork Airport is at “exceptionally strong levels”, with passengers rating Cork Airport as 9.2 out of 10 in independent market research, according to airport management.
Some 96.8 per cent of passengers cleared security screening in Cork Airport in less than 15 minutes over the year. The 2022 passenger performance represents a 768 per cent increase on 2021 traffic and an 86 per cent recovery of 2019 passenger traffic, the last equally comparable period prior to the pandemic.
“In a year which saw the swift recovery of international travel after the removal of the last remaining COVID-19 related restrictions, Cork Airport has firmly positioned itself as the state’s second busiest airport,” stated spokesperson Barry Holland.
“With the extremely strong demand for international travel last year coupled with new route additions, Cork Airport delivered exceptional passenger recovery on top of its successful runway reconstruction, completed in November 2021.
“Throughout the last two years, the steadfast support and assistance from the Department of Transport and the Irish government has greatly aided the recovery of passenger traffic at Cork Airport,” added Mr Holland.
In 2022, Cork Airport offered a total 45 scheduled routes serving the UK and mainland Europe. Eight scheduled airlines operated services in 2022 – Ryanair, Aer Lingus, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Air France, Lufthansa, Vueling, SWISS International Air Lines and TUI, together with a number of charter airlines.
December 2022 saw a return of seasonal reunions as passengers celebrated the first restriction free Christmas in three years. Passenger traffic in December 2022 was marginally higher than that experienced in December 2019, indicating a return to pre-pandemic demand for international travel to and from Cork Airport.
Managing Director, Niall MacCarthy said, “after two years of COVID-19, we were delighted with the strength of the recovery at Cork Airport in 2022.
"Our team works very hard at Cork Airport, to make the passenger journey seamless, friendly, and easy. We thank our loyal and valued customers and encourage prospective passengers in the hinterland of Munster and south Leinster to bear this ease and convenience in mind when booking their summer holidays in 2023.”
Speaking on Tuesday morning, An Cathaoirleach of Seanad Eireann and a former member of the Oireachtas Transport Committee, Jerry Buttimer, welcomed the news that Cork Airport welcomed 2.24 million passengers in 2022.
“Cork Airport is very important to Cork. Today’s figures are heartening snd shoe that people will support a strong airport," he said.
“2.24 million passengers is s significant number and an 86 per cent recovery from 2019 shows the potential of Cork airport and of Cork as a tourism destination."
Senator Buttimer concluded, “every support must continue to be given to Cork Airport to allow its growth trajectory path to continue."