Athens International Airport Eleftherios Venizelos has exceeded all expectations marking an overall increase of 11 per cent in passenger growth.

The 2018 passenger traffic is a historic record for Greece, reports, sharing the first available data showing that a total of 24,135,736 passengers were transported through the Greek capital’s airport.

The previous year’s traffic (2017), was also a record for the country, with domestic and foreign passengers reaching an all-time high of 21.73 million.

Domestic passengers in 2018 reached 7,730,539, marking a 5.6 per cent increase, whereas international passengers hit 16,405,197 an increase that goes over 13.8 per cent.

Seeing that the airport has almost doubled its traffic in the five year period between 2013 and 2018 going from 12.5 to 24.1 million passengers, talks about further expansion have resumed.

Back in 30 September, the Greek state represented by the finance minister, the Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund (HRADF) and the Athens International Airport had signed a contract for extension, agreeing to a privatisation programme of 483.87 million euros, which still awaits to be ratified by the Greek Parliament.

According to the International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) specifications, when airports reach 90 per cent of their total capacity, then their expansion plan has to commence.