SAS STRIKE AND EARLY EASTER HITS TRAFFIC AT SWEDEN’S AIRPORTS
Swedavia has blamed a number of one-off factors for last month’s 7% drop in passenger numbers across Sweden’s airports.
A total of 3.2 million passengers passed through its 10 airports in April, Swedavia attributing the unexpected decline to “negative impacts on the air travel development”, which it notes included a week long strike by SAS pilots at the end of the month.
As a result, the number of international passengers at Swedavia’s airports fell 3% to about 2.23 million in April, while the number of domestic passengers was just over a million – 15% down on the corresponding month a year ago.
One-time factors such as Easter falling in April compared to March last year also had a negative effect on especially domestic air travel.
Stockholm Arlanda, the jewel in the crown of Swedavia’s airport network, handled 1.65 million international passengers (-6%) in April and 379,000 domestic travellers – a not insignificant 19% decline in April 2018.
On the plus side, both Gothenburg Landvetter (+5%) and Stockholm Bromma (+19%) reported rises in international passengers in April, although each saw domestic throughput decrease by 22% and 4% respectively.
Swedavia notes that 25 new routes have been launched at its airports this year, all but one serving international destinations.
SAS is reported to have reached a new pay agreement with its pilots to end the strike, whose industrial action over seven days led to the cancellation of over 4,000 flights.