Compared to December 2019, which also shows the significant recovery of air transport work in Greece in 2021 compared to 2020.
According to Eurostat data in terms of the number of flights in December 2021, Greece experienced a drop of 8% compared to the same month in 2019 and was in second place among EU member states, after Croatia (-6% compared to December 2019) with the most significant losses. This was followed by Cyprus with a 9% drop in third place. The Czech Republic Prague airport (-40%) and Austria (-41%) had the biggest drop.
Overall, in December 2021 the number of commercial flights in the EU increased by 130% compared to December 2020, but remained lower by 24% compared to the same month in 2019.
In absolute terms, the number of commercial flights in the EU stood at 383,720 in December 2021, compared to 166,990 in December 2020 and 504,270 in December 2019.
According to Eurostat data, the air transport sector, which was one of the sectors most affected by the health crisis, showed a slow recovery throughout 2021. Although the first months of 2021 did not show any particular signs of recovery to pre-pandemic levels, the picture started to change from May, with a stronger improvement in the June-August quarter and even better results from October to December.
In particular, January closed at minus 68% compared to the same month in 2019, February was at -73%, March at -71% and April at -70%. A slight recovery was recorded in May (-67%), June (-54%) and August (-31%), with the last three months of the year, October (-30%), November (-26%) and December (-24%), showing the best picture compared to pre-pandemic levels.
Some EU airports have returned to normalcy, even recording an increase in the number of commercial flights compared to 2019. The largest increases in the number of commercial flights were recorded at Berlin (16%), Liege (21% ) and Le Bourget in Paris (8%).
On the other hand, the largest decreases were recorded at Munich (-64%), Frankfurt (-49%) and at Charles de Gaulle (-50%) in Paris airport.