THE number of plane passengers in Spain has decreased by a staggering 59.3% in the month of March, compared to the same month last year.

According to figures obtained by El Pais, the total number of travellers in the country were 8.13 million, with 5.36 million travelling internationally and 2.77 million domestically.

The Barajas Adolfo Suarez airport in Madrid registered the majority of passengers, with 1.97 million, 59.7% less than last year.

That’s followed by Barcelona’s El Prat airport, with 1.4 million travellers and a reduction of 64.3%.

In third place is Malaga’s Costa del Sol airport, with 613,438 passengers, representing a 54.7% decrease.

The same applies for European airports in general, with a 59.5% drop in passenger traffic.

That represents a decrease of 106 million passengers for the month throughout the continent.

At the start of the month, on March 1, European airports registered 5.12 million passengers, which is 11.7% less than on the same date last year.

According to figures from the International Council of Airports in Europe (ACI Europe), at the end of the month on March 31 however, they registered just 174,000 travellers, which marks a 97.1% decrease compared to March 2019.

ACI Europe CEO Olivier Jankovec said: “This has never been seen before. 

“In the global financial crisis, it took 12 months in 2009 for European airports to lose 100 million passengers. 

“With COVID-19, it only took 31 days.”

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