Published on February 2nd, 2020 | by Mark Dwyer


1.17 Million Flights Handled in 2019

Figures published by the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) show that 1,175,337 flights were handled by its air traffic control division in 2019 –  22,000 more than in 2018. This represents a 2% increase and is the highest number of flights recorded travelling through Irish airspace.

IAA Chief Executive, Peter Kearney said that these figures demonstrate the IAA’s strong performance in air navigation services provision and why the Authority continues to be ranked as a top performing air navigation service provider in Europe. Notwithstanding the growth in air traffic and record numbers of flights handled safely, the IAA continues to meet all of its EU regulatory requirements in key areas, underlining our continued strong safety record: “Including the 2019 figures, the IAA has experienced a growth of almost 3% over the past 5 years. Despite this significant growth, the IAA continues to minimise air navigation delays.”

“The strong growth in air traffic handled is made possible by the continued investment in our infrastructure and people. The new IAA air traffic control tower at Dublin airport, the establishment of Aireon ALERT in the Shannon region and our ability to attract talent to the company are some of the investments that enable us to continue offering world-class service delivery to our customers.”

Main Highlights:

  • Total flights handled at State airports in 2019 grew by 3.7%, with over 310,000 movements recorded, representing strong year-on-year trend of growth in State airport traffic.
  • In 2019 air traffic grew by 14.6% at Cork airport
  • Dublin airport recorded a 2.5% increase in traffic numbers compared to 2018 figures
  • Shannon airport saw a 3.3% decrease in movements in 2019
  • There were 351,731 overflight traffic movements (flights, which do not land in Ireland) – up 1.5% on 2018 movements
  • 511,294 North Atlantic Communications flights (Europe /US Flights) handled in 2019 – a 1.2% increase on 2018 figures. These are flights that are provided with a HF radio service but may not necessarily enter Irish airspace. Due to our strategic location, Shanwick radio provides much of the communications services on the North Atlantic.

About the Author

Mark is an airline pilot flying the Boeing 737 for a major European airline. In addition he is also a Type Rating Instructor, Type Rating Examiner and Base Training Captain on the B737. Outside of commercial flying Mark enjoys flying light aircraft from the smallest 3 Axis microlights up to heavier singles. He is also an instructor and EASA Examiner on single engines and a UK CAA Examiner. He flies the Chipmunk for the Irish Historic Flight Foundation (IHFF). Mark became the Chairman of the National Microlight Association of Ireland (NMAI) in 2013 and has overseen a massive growth in the organisation. In this role he has worked at local and national levels. In 2015, Mark won ‘Upcoming Aviation Professional Award’ at the Aviation Industry Awards sponsored by the IAA. Mark launched this website back in 2002 while always managing the website, he has also been Editor and Deputy Editor of FlyingInIreland Magazine from 2005 to 2015.

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