Trade fair visitors flock to airport

The increase in the number of international exhibitions in Nuremberg has brought with it a rise in passenger numbers at Nuremberg Airport. And travellers from the region are also reaping the benefits of this. /// by 

Whether they are heading for a holiday in the sun or an exhibition, trade fair visitors and holidaymakers alike can take off from Nuremberg Airport. Photo: Nuremberg Airport

Around 4.2 million passengers used Nuremberg Airport in 2017, 700,000 more than in the previous year. The airport is reaping the rewards of a lot of traffic due to international trade fairs. And this is a bonus for travellers from the region as well, explains airport chief Dr Michael Hupe: “The positive impact of the exhibition centre is an important locational advantage which also benefits local airport users thanks to the extra flights on offer.”

Larger aircraft, more flights to trade fairs

During international trade fairs at the Exhibition Centre the passenger numbers at Albrecht Dürer Airport Nuremberg increase significantly. To meet the extra demand, airlines are using larger aircraft and increasing the frequency of flights. The higher capacity utilisation due to trade fair traffic makes it worthwhile for airlines to offer new direct flights, even outside the peak travel periods in summer. “As many leading international fairs are held in the months when there are fewer flights, the trade fair traffic is an incentive for a lot of airlines to fly certain routes all year round,” says Hupe.

In the past year, the airport has celebrated maiden flights e.g. to Tel Aviv, Israel, Krakow, Poland and Vilnius, Lithuania. Thanks to the new direct flights, the Albrecht Dürer airport is enjoying a boom: With 20 percent growth in traffic compared with the previous year, Nuremberg Airport grew more than any other large commercial airport in Germany in 2017, ahead of even the capital (Berlin-Schönefeld), Hamburg and Hanover.

New connections: daily flights to Poland

Some exhibitors use chartered planes or business jets to travel to international trade fairs like the BrauBeviale. Photo: Nuremberg Airport

Eight new destinations are already on the agenda for 2018. Of these, an inaugural flight on 9 May is of particular interest to NürnbergMesse: Twice a day, Polish airline LOT
 will fly from Nuremberg directly to Warsaw. This is a connection which NürnbergMesse has high hopes about. The trade fairs in Nuremberg are very popular with Polish companies, whose participation as exhibitors and visitors recently grew by an astounding 31 percent..

With a large number of major international trade fairs under its belt, NürnbergMesse is expecting a year to rival the record-breaking 2016, when more than 32,000 exhibitors and over 1 million trade visitors (1.42 million visitors in total) took part in the trade fairs and congresses in Nuremberg.

The airport too is expecting a “record-breaking summer”. In 2018, the frontrunners among the international participants will ensure a lot of air traffic: 82 percent of exhibitors at Interzoo (trade fair for pet supplies) travel from abroad, and for the IWA OutdoorClassics (hunting supplies, outdoor) the figure is 79 percent. In February, around 50,000 visitors from 134 countries took part in BIOFACH. So the prospects for growth look good again in 2018, for the airport and for NürnbergMesse.

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