Lonely Planet Writer

Dublin Airport is the fastest growing airport in Europe this year

Dublin Airport has emerged as the fastest growing airport in Europe so far in 2016.

Dublin Airport is growing at a more rapid rate than any other main airport in Europe
Dublin Airport is growing at a more rapid rate than any other main airport in Europe

New data from the trade association for airports – ACI Europe – shows the Irish capital’s passenger numbers rising by 13.4% in the first six months of the year.


European air passengers more likely to book online.
Dublin Airport now welcomes 25 million passengers a year through its gates

The increase in growth makes Dublin the top performer among the continent’s top tier airports. The upward surge on the city’s graph comes hot on the heels of its record-breaking showing last year when 25 million passengers passed through its gates.

Dublin Airport has become one of the fastest growing airports in Europe thanks to extra flights this year by several airlines, including Aer Lingus
Dublin Airport returns this year comes on top of last year’s record-breaking year in terms of numbers Image by Brian Lawless/PA Wire

El-Prat Airport in Barcelona was next in line to Dublin with a 12.7% growth with Sabiha Gokcen International Airport in Istanbul next in line at 12%.

Dublin Airport
Dublin Airport outstripped Barcelona and Istanbul’s top tier airports to be top of the league Image by irish Jaunt / CC BY 2.0

Others performing well included Copenhagen Airport at 10.9% while Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport was 1% less than that figure.

All of those named were well ahead of competitors in Europe where the average growth was just under 5%.

However, airports in the EU had a stronger average growth across the first six months at 6.2%, ACI Europe data reveals. Vincent Harrison, Dublin Airport’s Managing Director said welcoming almost 13 million passengers in the first half of the year was “a very strong performance.”

He pointed out this growth was positively impacting on the Irish economy with increased trade and investment.

It was also significantly boosting tourist returns. A study last year by consultant group, InterVistas, showed Dublin Airport to be central to the country’s economy by supporting or creating almost 100,000 jobs and contributing nearly €7 billion to the exchequer.

Mr Harrison stressed that the growth translated into 1.5 million more people going through the airport this year.