Iceland’s Keflavik International Airport has expectations of flying more passengers in 2023. The airport projects to fly 7.8 million passengers next year. Iceland’s airport administrator, Isavia, projects 2023 as an excellent year for the airport when it retains total passenger capacity from the pandemic.

The Strong Rebound

Isavia announced its forecast for passengers for next year. Keflavik airport expects 2023 to be the third largest in the airport’s history, with 7.8 million passengers forecasted and 2.2 million tourists visiting Iceland. This puts 2023 behind 2018, when 2.3 million tourists visited Iceland.

The airport projects 24 airlines will fly the 7.8 million passengers based on their forecast. According to Isavia, passenger transfer will be at 27%, similar to 2019 but less than in 2018 when passenger transfer was 40%.

The 24 airlines will have flights to and from 80 destinations in Europe and North America.

Iceland’s Keflavik International Airport
The airport projects 24 airlines will fly the 7.8 million passengers based on their forecast.| © Ekky Wicaksono

Number of Passengers

Keflavik had 4.39 million passengers between January and October 2022, according to the airport administrator Isavia. The airport had only recovered 51.2% of its pre-pandemic traffic capacity.
The pandemic continues to affect the airport. August was Keflavik’s most significant month in 2022, when it received 841,564 passengers. They recovered around 71% of pre-pandemic passenger capacity that same month compared to August 2018. There were only 50% of pre-pandemic transit passengers, that is, people who use Keflavik as a connectivity hub.

There were about 3208 flights monthly flights as of November 2022 from Keflavik. The largest operator is Icelandair, with 1,739 weekly flights, followed by Play with 529 and easyJet with 314.

Keflavik International Airport
August was Keflavik’s most significant month in 2022, when it received 841,564 passengers.| © Aldo Garza

Future plans for Keflavik International Airport

Iceland and Isavia are looking forward to investing heavily in Keflavik. Isavia CEO Sveinbjorn Indridason stated that the airport is a leading international hub laying the foundation for the number of flight connections that the Icelandic economy depends on.

“Airports Council International in Europe (ACI Europe) has stated that a 10% increase in direct flight connections results in about 0.5% economic growth in the country concerned. The effect in Iceland is probably even greater since we are an island country,” said Sveinbjörn.

The Chief Commercial and Airport development Officer (CCDO) at Isavia mentioned that the quick recovery of passengers in 2022 and the traveller forecast confirms that the tourism sector has reached its previous strength, which promotes Isavia to continue responsibly developing Keflavik International Airport.

What do you think about next year’s Keflavik Airport passenger rebound forecast? Let us know in the comments section below.

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