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Nigeria Ranks 7th on List of Africa’s Top 10 Busiest Airports

Nigeria is ranked seventh among the top ten busiest airports in Africa.

According to a new report from the International Air Transport Association (IATA), African carriers saw a significant rise in international passengers of 20.7% over the previous year.

This increase is part of a larger trend in which the worldwide aviation sector is recovering, with overall passenger counts 5.7% higher in February 2024 than prior to the pandemic.

Johannesburg’s O.R. Tambo International Airport, which serves as Southern Africa’s principal aviation hub, is ranked first among Africa’s top ten busiest airports.

Here is a list of the top ten busiest airports.

1. O.R. Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg.

In 2023, O.R. Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg will handle 15 million passengers. This figure reflects both domestic and foreign passenger movements throughout the year.

O.R. Tambo International Airport is the country’s principal aviation gateway. Due to South Africa’s vast geography, air travel is frequently the only viable option to link its many cities.

In 2006, the airport was renamed after Oliver Reginald Tambo, a well-known anti-apartheid activist. The airport was previously named after Jan Smuts, a former prime minister who backed apartheid policy.

2. Cairo International Airport, Cairo

Cairo International Airport has recently undergone significant development and growth, establishing itself as an important hub in Africa for both passenger and cargo aircraft.

Throughout 2023, the airport successfully handled over 26 million passengers on over 195,000 flights.

This tremendous effort helped to boost Egypt’s overall airport traffic to over 47 million passengers for the year, a 28% increase over the previous year.

This expansion highlights Cairo International Airport’s growing importance in connecting Egypt to global destinations, enhancing its ability to handle an increasing flow of passengers and commodities.

3. Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa

Bole International Airport serves as the main base for Ethiopian Airlines, Africa’s largest airline. It has good ties to other continents and within Africa itself.

The airport is rapidly expanding and now has the capacity to handle tens of thousands of passengers per day during peak periods.

4. Cape Town International Airport

Cape Town International Airport has been named the greatest airport on the continent for seven years in a row and is one of Africa’s busiest, with 10.9 million passengers in 2019.

The majority of these passengers most certainly had a favorable experience, as indicated by its acknowledgment by Skytrax, the world’s airline and airport star rating program.

5. Mohammed V International Airport in Casablanca
In 2023, Mohammed V International Airport in Casablanca saw strong passenger growth, accommodating approximately 8.97 million passengers in the first 11 months of the year.

This was a 95% recovery over the same period in 2019. The airport’s record reflects a healthy resurgence in air travel following the downturns of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Morocco’s busiest airport is in Casablanca, a city famed for its role in the iconic World War Two film.

6. Houari Boumediene Airport in Algiers

In the first quarter of 2023, Houari Boumediene Airport in Algiers handled 1.7 million passengers.

This statistic comprises more than 640,000 departing and over 511,000 incoming international passengers, as well as 270,000 departing and 276,000 arriving domestically.

During this time, the airport handled 17,500 flights, which included both domestic and foreign routes.

Despite these stats, the airport is significantly larger than it appears. It has four terminals and can manage up to 22 million people every year, although it hasn’t achieved this capacity yet.

Houari Boumediene Airport, like many of the other airports mentioned, is named after Algeria’s second president following independence.

7. Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos.

In 2023, Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos handled around 6.53 million passengers.

This statistics places it among Africa’s busiest airports, indicating that it handles a substantial volume of both local and international travel.

The airport remains an important center for passenger and cargo travel in West and Central Africa.

8. Menara Airport, Marrakech.

Menara Airport serves the capital city of Morocco’s Marrakech-Safi area, Marrakech.

Skytrax just selected Marrakech Menara Airport as the second-best regional airport in Africa for 2023.

This demonstrates its excellent service, cleanliness, and concern for its guests. These honors demonstrate the airport’s continued efforts to improve the flying experience for passengers.

Menara is not just designed for people; it is also well prepared to handle goods. It has a lengthy runway and provides a variety of services, including ground handling and fuel delivery, ensuring that cargo and passenger aircraft function smoothly.

9. Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi.

Kenya’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport is one of East Africa’s busiest.

Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) intends to develop a new terminal in 2023 to alleviate congestion.

There was also a fire that temporarily shut down one of its terminals, but operations were swiftly altered to keep the airport working efficiently. Upgrades and enhancements were conducted during the year to make the airport better for passengers.

Furthermore, JKIA’s strategic location in East Africa makes it an important gateway for international tourists visiting various African, European, Middle Eastern, and Asian locations.

10. King Shaka International Airport in Durban.

King Shaka International Airport, named after the founder of the Zulu kingdom, is one of South Africa’s most advanced airports. It has vast terminals that can accommodate large intercontinental aircraft such as the Airbus A380.

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