Schiphol Airport has made a significant dip in the ranking of the most busy airports in Europe last year.

In the first quarter, the Dutch airport welcomed more than two million travelers and is therefore good for tenth place, reports trade association ACI Europe (pdf).

A year earlier, Schiphol was number three.

Not only Schiphol welcomed significantly fewer travelers at the beginning of 2021. The same was true of airports in Germany, France and the United Kingdom, where strict lockdown measures dampened demand for air travel. The French airport Charles de Gaulle, which processed 82 percent fewer travelers, fell in the list from two to six. London Heathrow, number one from a year ago, is now not in the top ten at all. Of the nearly eighteen million travelers last year, only 9 percent remained.

Russia and Turkey dominated the top of the rankings.

Istanbul Airport, last year's number four, was now number one in terms of passengers with nearly 5.5 million travelers.

That is still two-thirds less than last year, when more than 15 million travelers visited the airport.

The top five European airports have now been completed by Moscow-Domodedovo, Moscow-Sheremetyevo, Istanbul-Sabiha Gökçen and Moscow-Vnukovo.

Russian Saint Petersburg was in seventh place.

Sochi airport was the only one to handle more travelers in the first quarter.

The 47 percent growth was mainly due to the fact that Russians flocked to the seaside resort on the Black Sea.

No improvement in April yet

ACI Europe further notes that the April figures show no significant improvement yet.

In the first ten days of April, passenger traffic at European airports fell by 80 percent.

In addition, about two thousand routes have already been lost this year.

ACI Europe also revised its forecasts downwards for the year as a whole.

For example, a passenger flow is now expected to be 64 percent below the 2019 level.

That was 52 percent in an earlier estimate.

All this will ensure that European airports will lose EUR 29 billion in revenue this year, compared to EUR 30 billion less revenue the year before.

In addition to the slow recovery, the strong competitive pressure at airports is also playing a role. According to the ACI, this will mean that increasing costs for restarting operations cannot simply be recouped. This means that the situation has deteriorated compared to the beginning of 2021, concludes Director General Olivier Jankovec of ACI Europe.