Three million mark to be surpassed soonBelgrade Nikola Tesla Airport is expected to handle its third millionth passenger for the year next week, for the first time since 1988. In November, Belgrade Airport welcomed a total of 215.113 passengers, an increase of 17.7% compared to the same month last year. This is despite the fact that there were 142 flights less this November than last. By the end of November the airport handled a total of 2.906.949 passengers, an increase of 16%. Since opening its doors in 1962, Belgrade Airport has managed to handle over three million passengers within a year on only two occasions, in 1987 when it reached its historic record of 3.311.951 passengers and 1988 when it saw 3.277.537 people use its services.
With a gloomy economic outlook for the European continent next year, it remains to be seen how air travel will be affected. Still, Belgrade Airport has secured several new services for next year with its main customer Jat Airways launching new routes. Norwegian Air Shuttle will commence flights from Copenhagen on May 4, its third destination to Belgrade along with Oslo and Stockholm. Flight details for the new service can be viewed here. Furthermore, Qatar Airways has said it will also launch flights to the Serbian capital but no firm dates have been given. It also remains to be seen whether Wizz Air will open any new destinations from its base.
With 2011 coming to a close, Belgrade will be the busiest airport in the former Yugoslavia with Zagreb Airport, which has also recorded historic growth, firmly in second place. However, it will be a sprint to the finish line between Ljubljana and Priština as they battle for the title of third busiest airport in the EX-YU region, with Priština currently having the upper hand.