Gibraltar International Airport has again beaten records on passenger numbers, closing 2016 with 548,230 passengers handled in the calendar year.
In a statement the Gibraltar Government said 2016’s record beat that of 2015 by an additional 103,894 passengers, or 23.4% growth.
The majority of passengers, 546,549, travelled on scheduled services, with the additional 1,681 recorded being classed as ‘non-scheduled’ passengers, arriving or departing on corporate services and charter flights.
4,968 commercial aircraft movements – arrivals and departures – were recorded, compared to 4,100 in 2015, up 21.2%.
Monthly, December recorded the highest percentage growth compared to 2015, with 28.0% more passengers that month, 40,005, compared to 31,252 in 2015.
The month with the highest number of passengers recorded was August with 60,360. August was also second highest for percentage growth after December, with 27.5% growth on the previous year.
The busiest day for scheduled passengers handled was Sunday July 31, with 3,212 passing through the airport, 1,612 on arrival and 1,600 on departure.
Overall load factor for scheduled flights was 78.8%. September had the highest monthly load factor at 84.4%, and January the lowest, at 70.1%.
The busiest route was to London Gatwick followed by Heathrow, Manchester and Luton.
Summer 2016 was a record season with 50 weekly departures, 48 to the UK and two to Morocco.
Gilbert Licudi, Minister for Commercial Aviation and Tourism, said: ‘2016 has been a bumper year with record number of passengers travelling through the airport, and exceeding the half a million passenger mark for the first time.
“We continue to ensure Gibraltar International Airport becomes the airport of choice for both visitors and airlines and look forward to continued growth for the benefit of business and tourism development to Gibraltar.’
Terence Lopez, Air Terminal Director added: “December has been the perfect ending to a record breaking year. I will take the opportunity to thank our airlines and passengers for selecting Gibraltar Airport and our partner organisations at the Airport for helping us achieve such a record whilst still delivering a high standard of service.”