CPH traffic: 29,177,833 travellers passed through the airport in 2017

In 2017, Copenhagen Airport saw growth for the eighth year in a row. It was also the busiest year in the airport’s history, with nearly 29.2 million passengers. More people flew directly and more flew long haul, while there were fewer domestic passengers and fewer transfers via Copenhagen out into the world. 


It was busy in the terminals at Copenhagen Airport in 2017. With 29,177,833 passengers, CPH emerged from the year with overall growth of 0.5%.

This means there has been continuous growth since the financial crisis year of 2009, when 19.7 million people passed through Copenhagen Airport. During that period, the average annual growth has been 5%.

104,609 travelled on the busiest day of the year

In 2017, there were 18 days on which more than 100,000 passengers passed through the terminals. One of those days, 7 July, turned out to be the busiest day in the airport’s history, with 104,609 passengers.

“More than 100,000 passengers is the new norm on big travel days – and the airlines and the airport’s employees have really geared the whole organisation and service to this,” says Copenhagen Airport’s CEO, Thomas Woldbye.

The growth rate for the year ended up positive despite numbers falling away in the final months, with 3.8% fewer passengers travelling in December than in the same month of 2016.

More people flying directly and long haul

“In the past decade, the trend has been for more passengers to choose direct flights where they are available and the schedule suits. This is also evident in the traffic figures for 2017, with the number of local departing passengers increasing by almost 3% to 14.5 million,” says Thomas Woldbye.

The long-haul routes also enjoyed a growth spurt. 185,000 more passengers travelled on one of the direct intercontinental routes from CPH, an increase of 6%.

In 2017, new routes opened to New Delhi and Agadir (Morocco). At the same time, several airlines increased their departures to Bangkok, Los Angeles and New York. 2018 will bring more long-haul routes, including Hong Kong and Amman (Jordan). Major efforts are also under way to establish new routes to China.

“If we break down the figures, the number of passengers on the routes to China has increased by 5.3% to a total of 283,000. The routes to the USA are also faring well, with an increase of 3.7% to 1,090,000 passengers,” says Thomas Woldbye.

Other growth routes include Dubai, up 9.7% to 351,000 passengers. The big improver is Canada, which grew by 20.7% to 157,000 passengers.

Fewer domestic flyers and fewer transfers

By contrast, the number of passengers on domestic routes fell by 5.8% to 1,611,369. This decline needs to be turned into growth.

“In collaboration with the regional airports and the domestic airlines, we’ve therefore launched a major campaign to raise awareness of how quick and easy it is to fly around Denmark – and hence how easy it is to fly via Copenhagen out into the world,” says Thomas Woldbye.

For all that, Aalborg is still number 6 on the list of top 10 destinations, with 861,236 passengers.

When it comes to transfers, there was also negative growth in 2017, with the number of transfer passengers falling by 8.4% to 2,823,500. SAS accounts for 82% of transfer traffic at CPH.