Only for the second time in history, annual number of passengers handled at Košice Airport exceeded 500.000.
542 026 passengers passed the gates of Košice International Airport in 2018 what represents a 9,12 % increase (+ 45 318 passengers) compared to the previous year. 369 973 passengers used scheduled routes and 169 579 passengers flew to/from Košice on charter flights.
This summer's season was one of the most striking milestones of 2018, as it was historically the most successful one with a remarkable increase of 39,90% compared to the previous year.
169 579 passengers flew to/from Košice on charter flights what represents a 31,30 % of the total number of passengers. This figure includes all charter flights - not only those during the summer season but during the whole year (such as the popular spring or autumn flights to Tel Aviv). So the biggest share of total increase belongs to charter traffic which grew by 48 349 passengers (+39,90 %).
In the end of October two new routes to Düsseldorf and Munich were launched by Eurowings what was a direct consequence of the fact that Košice Airport succeeded in the "Vote and Fly" competition where it got the most votes out of 6 nominated destinations.
Chief executive officer and chairman of the board of Košice International Airport Michael Tmej said: „I am pleased that again we can say that the last year was very successful for Košice Airport. I´d like to emphasize especially the strongest summer charter season ever and also the fact that we managed to unify whole Eastern Slovakia and with this great support we won the „Vote & Fly“ competition of Eurowings. For our region and for its continuous development the connectivity with the whole world is vitally important. In 2018 it was guaranteed by 6 airline partners. I sincerely thank to all our partners, our dedicated staff and all passengers who used our services in 2018.
Unfortunately, in 2018 Košice Airport had to face also some unpleasant issues. Wizz Air has cancelled its base in Košice (the only one in Slovakia) in May 2018, with 3 popular regular routes to Doncaster Sheffield, Cologne and Tel Aviv being cancelled, too. The positive fact is that the connection with Germany was very quickly renewed by two new routes operated by Eurowings (Düsseldorf, Munich). Wizz Air still operates from Košice to London Luton, with the largest aircraft ever used at Košice Airport (the 230-seat Airbus A321) on scheduled flights. Long-term business partner Czech Airlines announced cancellation of a long-running, successful and necessary route from Košice to Bratislava in the end of the year 2018. Last flight to Bratislava is scheduled for January 11, 2019.
In April 2018 together with Radio Košice we organized the 3rd year of popular Košice Runway Run at Košice Airport. More than 1 600 runners enjoyed the special feeling of running on an Kosice runway during this unique event. The 4th year is planned for April 27, 2019.
During the summer season 2018 Košice Airport handled 591 charter flights to 19 destinations in 10 countries. The first flight departed on 25th of May to Hurgada and the last one arrived on 3th of November from Hurgada. The summer season lasted considerably longer than in previous years. The most demanded destination was Antalya with close to 44 990 passengers, followed by Burgas with 28 440 passengers and Hurgada with almost 15 508 passengers.
After the most successful charter season ever, Košice International Airport was marking and celebrating important milestone for the airport. On Wednesday, 21st of November 2018, the five hundred thousandth passenger of the year passed through its gates.
Košice Airport has started the year 2019 with 8 destinations (Vienna, Prague, Bratislava, Warsaw, Istanbul, London Luton, Dusseldorf, Munich) in 7 countries available on a year-round scheduled flights and more than 500 destinations worldwide can be reached from Košice with just one stop on board of Austrian Airlines, Czech Airlines, LOT Polish Airlines, Turkish Airlines, Wizzair and Eurowings.
Great news for all travelers is that Ryanair, Europe's largest airline, will fly to/from Košice. It will operate direct connection between Košice and London Southend from the 2nd April 2019. With arrival of Ryanair, Košice Airport will proudly welcome the seventh airline what means more opportunities for local people to travel and explore the world.