Dublin and Cork Airports Eclipsed Pre-COVID Passenger Levels Again in April

May 4, 2023


April was another record month for passenger numbers at Dublin Airport, with a total of 2.83 million passengers travelling through during the month, according to airport operator, daa.

The numbers passing through Dublin Airport were marginally higher (+0.7%) than the 2.81 million passengers who passed through in the previous busiest April in 2019 and up +18% from 2.39 million in April 2022.

In the first four months of 2023, just shy of 9.5 million passengers have passed through Dublin Airport.

At Cork Airport, the state’s second busiest airport, passenger numbers in April totalled 250,030 representing a +30% increase on April 2022 and a +19% increase on April 2019. Given the significant uplift in passenger traffic, Cork Airport has revised its 2023 passenger forecast upwards, with 2.6 million passengers expected to fly to and from Munster’s best-connected airport this year, which would see Cork Airport back to pre-pandemic passenger levels. (2019: 2.6 million).

daa CEO Kenny Jacobs said: “The April figures were buoyed by a very busy Easter period which saw record numbers travelling through Dublin Airport. Once again it was a very smooth month for our security operation, with 96% of passengers safely through screening in 20 minutes or less. The busiest day of the month at Dublin Airport came on Friday May 28 as thousands availed of the start of the long Bank Holiday weekend to make a trip overseas, with around 50,000 passengers departing that day.

“The month of May is set to be busy too at both Dublin and Cork airports, as we see large numbers travelling for big events, including the culmination of the football season in the UK, a number of big rugby matches including the Champions Cup and Challenge Cup finals in Dublin, as well as the beginning of the summer concert season, with a string of big gigs set to take place starting with Bruce Springsteen this weekend.”

“The resumption of key summer services at Cork Airport, including those to destinations such as Frankfurt, Germany; Dubrovnik, Croatia and a new route to Bristol, UK provides even more choice for passengers at the busiest and best-connected airport serving the South of Ireland. The resumption of these services also offers Continental European and UK holidaymakers the opportunity to directly access the Wild Atlantic Way, Ireland’s Ancient East and all that Munster and the South of Ireland has to offer from Cork Airport.”

Dublin Airport Recycling Progress

daa also reported good progress in its efforts to make its airports more sustainable. A trial of new waste segregation methods in a select number of security lanes during the first quarter of 2023 resulted in a three-fold increase in the amount of recycling. The trial proving so successful that the new procedures have now been extended to all security screening lanes in Terminal 1.

Passenger Advice For Summer

Passengers travelling out of Dublin Airport over the coming weeks and months are advised to be in their terminal two hours prior to a short-haul flight and three hours before a long-haul departure.

Passengers travelling from Cork Airport are advised to arrive at the airport at least 90 minutes before their flight is due to depart.

Anyone travelling this summer should be aware of the worsening French Air Traffic Control situation and potential for continuing industrial action. This could generate delays that impact passengers departing Irish airports to destinations in France and on flights that need to cross French air space.


April 2023 in Numbers at daa’s Irish Airports
Cork Airport   Dublin Airport
Number of Passengers 250,030 Number of Passengers 2,830,000
Number of Flights 1,714 Number of Flights 20,246
Through Security in <20 mins 99% Through Security in <20 mins 94%
Flight Load Factor 79% Flight Load Factor 83%
Busiest Day for Travel Tuesday, April 11 Busiest Day for Travel Friday, April 28
Busiest Destination London Heathrow Busiest Destination London Heathrow
Top-selling sandwich in airport shops Ham and cheese panini Top-selling sandwich in airport shops Chicken & Stuffing
Most popular coffee purchase Cappuccino Most popular coffee purchase Americano
Flights Departing On-Time 75% Flights Departing On-Time 62.1% *

Note to the editor:

*Departing On-Time Performance at Dublin Airport impacted in April by Air Traffic Control industrial action in Mainland Europe.