Passenger through-flow at Tallinn Airport, Estonia's largest, was up 49 percent on year to February 2023 and stood at 190,236. The airport says this also represents near-recovery to pre-pandemic levels.
The figure was also impacted positively by the school half-term holiday, in the first February since 2019 in which no significant Covid restrictions applied.
On the other hand, the economic downturn and soaring inflation may have had a deleterious effect on passenger totals at Tallinn Airport in February, which nonetheless stood at 97 percent of the same figure for February 2019.
Tallinn Airport served 32 passenger destinations in February, while passenger flight occupancy stood at 70 percent on average.
Close to half of all passengers flew to five major European hubs: Helsinki, Riga, Frankfurt, Stockholm and Warsaw.
These were followed as popular destinations by London (all airports), Milan and Istanbul, the airport says.
Anneli Turkin, board member at AS Tallinna Lennujaam, said flights to Ukraine, Belarus and Russia constituted close to 10 percent of the total.
School break destinations ranged from those associated with skiing trips, to warmer climes and also city break destinations.
On the domestic front, 4,148 passengers passed through regional airports under Tallinn Airport's remit. Kuressaare Airport (Saaremaa) took the lion's share of this, at 2,926 passengers, also a rise of 49 percent on year to February.
While no air traffic whatsoever was recorded at Kihnu Airport – Kihnu is a small island in the Gulf of Riga – 824 passengers passed through Kärdla Airport (Hiiumaa, up 48 percent on year) , 231 via Ruhnu (another, even smaller island), 150 through Pärnu and 17 through Tartu Airport.
The Kärdla figures were positively affected by the entry into market of Diamond Sky, which uses a 33-seat plane, larger than that previously used on the Tallinn-Kärdla route.
Editor: Andrew Whyte, Aleksander Krjukov