Budapest Airport Cargo Upswing

Hungary’s capital city airport, Budapest did not have an easy time some years back when the Hungarian national carrier, Malev, went bankrupt and cargo volumes at the airport’s then rather dilapidated handling facilities dropped drastically.
Things have changed for the better.

Photo: l > r: Reka Sebestyen, Head of Property Development and Leasing, Rene Droese, Property and Cargo Director BUD Airport, Jozsef Kossuth, Cargo Manager BUD Airport
Photo: l > r: Reka Sebestyen, Head of Property Development and Leasing, Rene Droese, Property and Cargo Director BUD Airport, Jozsef Kossuth, Cargo Manager BUD Airport

Record tonnages in Q1 and Q2
Figures released last week show that Budapest Airport handled a total of 72,161 tonnes of cargo in the period January to June 2017. This represents an upswing of just under 20% compared to the previous year.
Of the total amount for the first six months, 49,420 tonnes were actual flown cargo which shows an increase of 16.7%. The remaining 22,740 tonnes were trucked cargo, which also increased by 26.5% for the period.
The July figures show a continued upward trend with a 16% increase to 10,729 tonnes in total handled of which almost 7,500 tonnes were flown and the remaining 3,300 tonnes were trucked air freight.

New DHL facility at BUD  -  credit: DHL
New DHL facility at BUD - credit: DHL

Steady increases and better facilities
Jozsef Kossuth who is Cargo Manager at Budapest Airport is very happy with the continued positive development. He states that “Budapest has a balanced market share, with inbound cargo at 47% during the first half year and export shipments at 53% for the same period.” He puts the high amount of export shipments down to what he calls the continued industrial development of the Central European region.
2016 itself was a relatively good year for Budapest Cargo. This it seems will be increased even further by the end of this year. Cargo volumes grew mainly thanks to new cargo flows generated from long-haul passenger services from carriers such as Air China and Emirates. The contribution by all cargo carriers such as Cargolux, Turkish Cargo and Qatar Airways Cargo was also increased.

Rene Droese, Property and Cargo Director at Budapest claims that the improved road network from Budapest to other EU countries has helped generate increased RFS networks to and from the airport.
New airlines on the BUD map are Air Canada and American Airlines who will commence daily Budapest to Philadelphia as of summer 2018. LOT Polish Airlines will add six weekly direct flights Budapest to New York and Chicago in May of next year.


The BUD air cargo facilities are undergoing a complete face-lift as part of the BUD 2020 Development Programme, which includes two new express facilities and a dedicated freight centre to be named ‘Cargo City.’ DHL has just announced that they have now opened their two new DHL Express facilities at BUD. Offering 6,000 sqm space they are capable of handling 6,000 parcels per hour.


Budapest hosts cargo conferences
The airport is sponsoring this week’s Air Cargo Handling Conference (19-21 September) and Cool Chain Association Pharma and BioSciences Conference (18 - 19 September) which are being held at the Corinthia Hotel in downtown Budapest.
CargoForwarder Global will be reporting on these in next week’s issue.

John Mc Donagh

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