Air Traffic Returns to 2019 Levels for Portugal

Totalling 5.7 million passengers in October, air traffic in Portugal is back up to pre-pandemic levels with a 42% increase on 2021. 

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Good news for all those looking to invest in Portugal. Its air passengers are back up beyond 2019 levels, suggesting one of Europe’s most popular tourist destinations is back on track after the pandemic.

According to recent data, national airports in Portugal received 5.7 million passengers in October—a rise of more than 42% on the same period last year. More importantly, it also beats the figure for 2019 by 4%. It’s a relatively small climb and much lower than would have been expected given previous growth rates, but it is a sign that visitors are coming back to Portugal and that 2023 could be even better.

So, what will this mean for the rental and property market in general?

Firstly, the data shows a steep rise when compared to the most recent years. Lisbon Airport saw passenger numbers increase by over 140% compared to 2021. Faro grew by more than 160%.

There were smaller increases on 2019, with a 2.3% increase in the number of aircraft landed and a 4% increase in the number of passengers handled. Cargo, however, is still down by 3.4%.

The pandemic was bad news for tourist destinations such as Portugal. With aircraft grounded around the world, Europe’s top holiday destinations effectively went into hibernation. Even as things opened up, visitors have been slow to get back up to pre-pandemic levels, but with visitor numbers now exceeding those of 2019, all that is set to change. 2022 saw people embrace the foreign holiday once more and 2023 is set to be even bigger.

All of which is more good news for people with rental properties or those considering investing in Portuguese property. Rental yields in places such as the Algarve remain among the best in Europe—and it’s not just holiday rentals that are looking good.

Portugal has seen an influx of people of all ages and from all backgrounds in recent years. Rental markets have been booming in the metropolitan centres of Lisbon and Porto.

Furthermore, like many other countries in Europe, Portugal is opening up a new rental market with its digital nomad visa. The visa makes it easier for remote workers whose main incomes come from outside of Portugal to come and live in the country for a while. Most of these nomads are choosing the rental market—either because they only intend to stay for a year or so, or because they are testing the waters before deciding whether to stay for the long term. Lisbon and Porto are top of their list, but it’s worth noting that these professionals are not tied to a city location. All they need is decent internet, meaning they could potentially settle anywhere.

Either way, increased airport traffic spells good news for the buy-to-let sector. The market is incredibly diverse with everyone from holidaymakers to retirees and young professionals moving into the rental market. Portugal’s vibrant, up-and-coming economy means it’s going to be one of the best places to invest for 2023 and beyond.

Contact us today to discover our available properties in Portugal.

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