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Rome Fiumicino Airport continues strong growth

Uzbekistan Airways inaugurated flights between Tashkent and Rome in March
Uzbekistan Airways inaugurated flights between Tashkent and Rome in March

Rome Fiumicino Airport (FCO) has solidified its status as a key player in Europe’s aviation landscape by handling 40.5 million passengers in 2023, fully recovering its pre-pandemic volume by October and experiencing a notable 6% increase in December compared to 2019.

The forward-looking projections for 2024 remain highly optimistic, indicating continued growth and development. March saw the arrival of two new carriers to FCO: Biman Bangladesh and Uzbekistan Airways, offering flights to Dhaka and Tashkent respectively.

Over the course of the year, FCO will extend its reach to over 220 points across the globe served by some 100 carriers, including the introduction of 20 new routes, 10 of which are to completely new destinations.

With the start of the summer season, Volotea, Eurowings, Skyalps, SunExpress, and ITA Airways commenced new routes to destinations ranging from Brest to Mostar, as well as from Izmir to Hanover and Nuremberg. Notably, flag carrier ITA adds services to Accra in June and Dakar in July. In the latter part of the year, in November, Air Mauritius will debut flights from its picturesque home in the Indian Ocean.

This summer also sees an upsurge in long-haul flights to North America. Daily departures to the continent will peak at 39, marking a 31% increase on summer 2019, along with a 60% rise in capacity levels. FCO also becomes the first airport in Europe to offer American Airlines’ signature first-class service. In addition, ITA Airways has introduced new routes to Chicago and Toronto, while United Airlines has added a second daily flight to Washington.

FCO is experiencing an uptick in flights to Canada as well, facilitated by Air Canada and Westjet. In May, ITA Airways introduced six-weekly rotations to Toronto, increasing to daily from June. Overall, Canada operations are growing 32% per week on 2019 levels.

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One significant trend in 2024 is the strong movement toward deseasonalization, a crucial strategy for sustaining year-round tourism and business travel. By November 2024, Rome’s busiest airport will count over 120-weekly flights to North America, a nearly 54% increase on the same month in 2019.

In Asia, six major Chinese carriers will serve nine destinations from FCO, while in the Middle East, ITA is expanding its footprint with new services to Kuwait, Jeddah, and Riyadh. Others, including Etihad Airways, Gulf Air and Wizz Air will boost frequencies on existing services in the region.

On the short to medium-haul front, low-cost carriers like Wizz Air, Ryanair, Vueling and easyJet are expanding, offering 12.5 million seats, a 25% increase on summer 2023, further diversifying FCO’s route network and enhancing accessibility across Europe. Both Wizz Air and Ryanair have two additional aircraft based at the airport compared to last summer, with Wizz Air on 13 and Ryanair on 11 jets.

Amidst its aviation development endeavours, FCO continues to garner accolades for its commitment to excellence. Recognised by ACI World as the Best Airport in Europe for an unprecedented seventh consecutive year, FCO remains dedicated to quality service. This distinction, coupled with its 5-Star Skytrax rating in 2023, as well as the World’s Best Airport Security Award at the 2024 Skytrax Airport Awards, solidifies FCO’s position as a premier global aviation hub.

Looking ahead, 2025 holds immense promise for FCO as Rome prepares to host the Jubilee, the largest Catholic event that occurs every 25 years. With an anticipated influx of over 30 million pilgrims, the Holy Year presents unparalleled traffic opportunities for airlines worldwide, further cementing FCO’s status as a vital gateway to the Eternal City.

Hanover is just one of the many new routes at Rome Fiumicino Airport this summer
Hanover is just one of the many new routes at Rome Fiumicino Airport this summer

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