Turkish airports welcomed more than 138 million passengers in the first nine months of this year, Transport and Infrastructure Minister Adil Karaismailoglu said on Sunday.
The January-September figure showed a year-on-year rise of 51%, Karaismailoglu said, citing data from the State Airports Authority Directorate General.
More than 59.4 million passengers took domestic flights and some 78.3 million took international flights from January to September.
Airports served more than 1.4 million planes including overflights in the nine-month period, up 34.1% from a year ago, he noted.
Air freighter traffic stood at 3 million tons in the first nine months of this year, he said.
Istanbul Airport, Türkiye’s busiest, saw 47.6 million passengers in the same period, Karaismailoglu said, mentioning how the hub was chosen the 2022 best airport in the world last week by the readers of Conde Nast Traveler magazine.
Antalya Airport on the Turkish Riviera saw 24.8 million passengers – 4.6 million domestic and 20.2 million international.
In September, more than 19.4 million air passengers traveled through Turkish airports, up 23.1% on an annual basis.
“Passenger traffic, which had plummeted due to the coronavirus pandemic, last month neared the September 2019 level,” Karaismailoglu said.
Flight traffic – including overflights – reached 97% of its pre-virus level this September, hitting 118,302, he stressed.