Barcelona airport enters the summer season, which has already begun in the airline sector, with record passengers and exceeding all demand forecasts. The conflict situation in the eastern Mediterranean, with the war in Gaza, has pushed a large part of the flows of travelers towards Spain, which is experiencing another tourism boom that is not without challenges.

In the case of El Prat, this new increase in demand is added to the revaluation of the Barcelona destination after the covid and a growing segment of fairs and conferences. All of this has led it to spend six months breaking passenger records and begin a period of maximum activity, according to the latest data published by Aena.

The month of April closed with more than 4.6 million passengers, an increase of 9.5% compared to the same month last year and still 1.7% above the previous record for that month, that of 2019. That year the airport approached its technical capacity limit, set at 55 million people per year, and if the trend does not change everything suggests that in 2024 it will get even closer to that figure.

The increase in international flights plays a fundamental role in this progress. The increase in travelers in this segment exceeds that of the entire Aena airport network. More than 3.4 million passengers traveled on international flights in El Prat last month, 11.8% compared to April 2023. In all airports in Spain, international passengers grew by 9.2%, up to 17.47 million. Barajas airport also grew above average in international travelers, with 12.2% more (3.95 million). The dense network of European flights in the case of El Prat, together with the return of the intercontinental market, and the consolidation of Madrid as a long-haul hub explain this increase.

As for domestic flights, they transported around 1.2 million passengers in Barcelona, ​​which represents 3.3% more than in April of last year. Here the growth is lower than in the airports as a whole, where these travelers increased by 4.9% (8.14 million in total).

The summer season, then, looks to be historic with these figures and the programming that the airlines have launched, with 42.2 million seats in Barcelona, ​​11% more than the summer season a year ago. The two main companies in El Prat, Vueling and Ryanair, have increased their flights significantly.

The record situation in Barcelona is repeated for the entire Aena network in Spain, to a greater or lesser extent. In the first four months of the year, it registered 86.4 million travelers, 11.6% more than a year before, and also achieved a record in air cargo and operations in the month of April.

In addition to El Prat and Barajas, 17 airports broke passenger records in the month of April, including Palma, Malaga, Gran Canaria, Alicante, Valencia, Seville, Lanzarote, Bilbao, Tenerife North, Santiago, Asturias, San Sebastián and Melilla. , which accounts for the unprecedented boom in tourism in Spain. In this sense, Aena plans to expand several airports apart from Madrid, such as Tenerife or Alicante.