Passenger numbers boost for Scandinavian carriers in September

Markus Mainka /

Carriers in Scandinavia — Norwegian Air, SAS, Finnair, and Icelandair — saw an increase in passenger numbers during September 2021. The improved traffic performance was largely attributed to easing travel restrictions in Europe. 

Norwegian Air carried 977,719 passengers in September 2021, an increase of 206% compared to the same period in 2020. This is the fifth consecutive month that Norwegian has reported positive traffic performance. 

“Demand is steadily growing across all our markets and bookings to our key European destinations are showing that our customers are regaining confidence in the travel sector and are now planning their future journeys well in advance,” CEO of Norwegian, Geir Karlsen, announced in a statement. 

Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS) transported more than one million passengers during September 2021. This was the third consecutive month when SAS carried more than one million travelers. The positive traffic performance was attributed to eased border restrictions. 

However, SAS chief executive Anko van der Werff said that “uncertainty regarding the pandemic and future demand” still remains. 

Finland’s flag carrier Finnair also reported positive passenger traffic numbers. During September 2021, Finnair carried 298,200 passengers, which was 158.1% more than in September 2020, and 11.9% more than in August 2021.

According to the Finnish airline, a “clear improvement” was especially seen in short-haul passenger traffic figures and air cargo, although the COVID-19 impact was still visible on North Atlantic and Asian routes in particular. 

Meanwhile, Icelandair’s international and domestic passenger numbers totalled 212,000 in September 2021, a significant increase compared to around 25,000 during the same period in 2020.


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