2.66 Million Passengers Through Ireland’s Two Busiest Airports In March

May 4, 2023


March was another record month at both Dublin and Cork airports with 2.48 million and 181,000 passengers travelling through each airport respectively, according to the airports’ operator daa.

A total of 2.48 million passengers went through Dublin Airport in March. That was 30,000 passengers higher than the number which went through in the previous busiest March in 2019 and 33% higher than in March 2022. This is the third consecutive month of record passenger numbers at the country’s biggest airport.

During the month there were a total of 1.23 million arriving passengers at Dublin Airport and 1.25 million departing passengers.

The March figures mean that 6.65 million passengers went through Dublin Airport in the first three months of 2023, which is 102% of 2019 levels.

At Cork Airport, March has followed the trend set in January and February, with another impressive performance. Last weekend, Cork Airport surpassed 500,000 passengers in the year to date. As Munster’s busiest airport, Cork Airport is set to welcome a total of 2.5 million passengers over the course of the full year.

March passenger figures at Cork Airport reflect a 10.4% increase on the same period last year and a 4.6% increase on March 2019.

daa CEO Kenny Jacobs said: “Our busiest St Patrick’s Day period in four years, combined with lots of other big sporting and entertainment events taking place, resulted in a really busy March at both Dublin and Cork airports.”

“ACI Europe our industry body is reporting that passenger levels across Europe are generally down 12% when compared to 2019, so international travel to and from Dublin and Cork airports has now recovered and is exceeding pre-pandemic levels,” Kenny Jacobs said.

“This is largely driven by flights to and from Continental Europe and transatlantic routes, followed by leisure demand and significant capacity expansion by our Irish based airline partners, “he added.

“London-Heathrow is back to being the busiest European airport and that is reflected in the fact that it is the busiest destination on the network from both Dublin and Cork airports,” Kenny Jacobs said. “Dublin Airport is also back as Europe’s 5th largest transatlantic hub.”

As part of its ongoing Sustainability journey, daa is committed to reducing its reliance on fossil fuels. In March, Dublin Airport commenced a HVO (hydrogenated vegetable oil) trial as an alternative fuel source for vehicles in the airport’s light and heavy fleets.

HVO fuel which is made from waste renewable materials such as vegetable oils, can reduce CO₂ emissions by up to 90% versus diesel and can also contribute to improved air quality.

Pending the trial outcome, daa will seek to transition light and heavy vehicles in the airport’s fleet to the new fuel source.

March 2023 in Numbers at daa’s Irish Airports
Cork Airport Dublin Airport
Number of Passengers 181,000 Number of Passengers 2,480,000
Number of Flights 2,669 Number of Flights 18,605
Through Security in <20 mins 99% Through Security in <20 mins 89.4%
Busiest Day for Travel Friday, March 31 – 8,357 Busiest Day for Travel Sunday, March 19 – 101,637
Busiest Destination London Heathrow Busiest Destination London Heathrow
Top-selling brand in The Loop  Clarins Top-selling brand in The Loop Charlotte Tilbury
Most popular cosmetics brand sold  Clarins Bottles of perfume sold: 50,000 50,000
Most popular brand of whiskey sold  Midleton Very Rare Bottles of whiskey sold 50,000
Best-selling local food produce Clonakilty Sausages Number of lipsticks sold:  6,667
Flights Departing On-Time 85.8% Flights Departing On-Time 66.9%*


Departing On-Time Performance at Dublin Airport impacted in March by:

o    Adverse weather conditions between March 8-11

o    ATC industrial action in France, Spain and Germany

o    Air Traffic Flow Management restrictions in Lisbon due to military activities