Aeroport di Roma

Salzburg is Austria’s second-busiest airport; Eurowings is number one; Wizz Air returns in 2024

flydubai SZG

Salzburg is famous as the birthplace of Mozart, the location of the Sound of Music, its UNESCO heritage centre and mountainous backdrop. While only Austria’s fifth most populous city, Salzburg had almost 1.39 million passengers between January and October 2023. Helped by being a popular tourist destination, including in winter for skiing, it is country’s second-busiest airport. Its recovery continues.

Salzburg passengers January

Gained various carriers, with Wizz Air returning in 2024

Relatively recent additions to Salzburg’s airline portfolio include flynas (July 2021), flydubai (July 2021), PLAY (January 2022), Icelandair (January 2022) and Air Serbia (June 2022).

Wizz Air started Salzburg flights in July 2020 but ceased serving the airport the following year. In this period, it had eight routes: Belgrade; Bucharest; Kyiv IEV; Larnaca; St Petersburg; Skopje; Tulza; and Varna. However, it will return in 2024 with three routes:

  • London LTN: 8 February 2024 (3-weekly); against easyJet in February/March
  • Skopje: 1 April 2024 (3-weekly); no direct competition
  • Bucharest: 2 April 2024 (3-weekly); no direct competition

Air Serbia SZG

Some airlines have ended…

Naturally, some carriers have exited the market, including Russian operators which cannot serve EU countries due to the Ukraine war. However, analysis of Cirium data shows that they only represented about 3% of Salzburg’s scheduled capacity in W19. Others include Aer Lingus, Luxair and People’s.

Probably the biggest change was the end of Austrian Airlines, which ceased its sole route – to Vienna – in March 2020. Designed for connectivity reasons over its hub, passengers can now travel on high-frequency trains to Vienna Airport.

Eurowings has a quarter of available seats

Thanks to Eurowings’ Salzburg base, it has a quarter of departing seats this winter. Its network comprises 14 routes, based on having at least four departures. Not helped by being the off-season, Germany accounts for about two-thirds of its capacity with routes to Berlin, Cologne, Düsseldorf and Hamburg.

Prague Airport

On 1 December, Eurowings started its latest international route: Amsterdam (2-weekly). It faces Transavia (weekly) and – beginning on 16 December – easyJet (weekly).

Lufthansa’s year-on-year growth is notable, which means it is now Salzburg’s second-largest operator (third in W22 and fourth in W19). It has 24-weekly departures to its Frankfurt hub in January mainly using the A319 but also the A320/A321/E190. Departures have risen from 20 in January 2023 (but down from 28 in 2019).

Lufthansa’s increase is also due to the 16 December launch of London LHR (mainly weekly). Curiously, this is the German carrier’s only route not touching its homeland.

Top 10 Salzburg airlines

Frankfurt is the leading destination

Salzburg’s W23 network comprises 44+ non-stop destinations with four+ flights over the season. More capacity is available to Frankfurt than any other airport, although it is, of course, particularly for connections. It is followed by London LGW, with the pair accounting for more than one in four Salzburg seats.  LGW has 17-weekly flights in January with BA EuroFlyer (10), easyJet (5) and TUI (2).

When all routes are included, Cirium tells that the UK has 181,000 departing seats, making it Salzburg’s largest country by capacity. It is against 162,000 to Germany. The UK is first both from good growth but also due to the slow recovery to Germany.

Top 10 Salzburg destinations W23

Buffalo Niagara International Airport