Air passenger traffic dipped once again across Europe in February 2013, new figures provided by Airports Council International (ACI) have confirmed.
Overall numbers were down by 0.2 per cent during the month when compared to February 2012, with EU airports suffering the most from the downturn.
Indeed, EU-based aviation hubs reported a 2.8 per cent decline in visitors, while non-EU facilities grew by 10.4 per cent over the same period. Air freight activity was down by 6.5 per cent across the continent during the month.
That said, ACI chiefs highlighted the fact that 2012 was a leap year, which has distorted the statistics.
Airport capacity is a big talking point at the moment and some experts have suggested that destinations like Istanbul and Dubai could soon overtake Heathrow as the busiest airport on the planet.
The ACI figures certainly highlight the strength of the Turkish city at the moment, as traffic at Istanbul Ataturk Airport was up by an impressive 26.5 per cent in February, while its second airport - Sabiha Gokcen International Airport - also recorded growth of 17.7 per cent year-on-year.