Birmingham Airport – The year 2022 in review

Exterior view of Birmingham Airport Terminal building.
Photo Credit: Birmingham Airport

LONDON – As with many airports, the year 2022 was a story of steady recovery for Birmingham Airport (BHX). 

As a key Midlands operational hub, here is a summary review of 2022, according to Birmingham Airport.


Following the lifting of Covid travel restrictions in March, BHX moved from 34% of pre-Covid (2019) customer volumes in January to 88% in October. 

During the pandemic the company was forced to let go 43% of its staff to preserve cash in the business.

Over the course of 2022 it recruited into these roles, building back to a stable, profitable business offering a reliable service to customers. 

The Commonwealth Games, Her Majesty The Queen’s death and the hottest day on record were among the major events which took place, each with its own unique impact on the airport’s operation.  

Nick Barton, Chief Executive of BHX, said: “As recently as January 2022, our borders with France, our neighbours, were closed and barely a soul was flying. A month later all that changed, and we began to emerge from the Covid deep-freeze. 

“There have been some great moments this year for our region, notably the Commonwealth Games, and for us as a business, including the steady growth in airlines, routes and customer numbers.”

“We’re now looking ahead to 2023 and beyond as we deliver our 10-year plan for low-carbon growth.” 

Birmingham Airport 2022 Timeline

January: (34% of Jan 2019)

With Covid travel restrictions still in place and many countries off limits, total passengers in and out of BHX was just 34% compared to January 2019. 

February: (54% of Feb 2019)

Government shared the idea of loosening Covid travel restrictions. 

March: (63% of March 2019)

All of Britain’s Covid travel restrictions were scrapped on 18 March. Solihull council launched a trial of its self-driving shuttle bus at BHX.

TUI announced additional summer capacity. Aer Lingus announced new Belfast City flights.  

April: (74% of April 2019)

BHX’s first million passenger month (1,003,087) since before the pandemic.

BHX unveiled its ‘carbon roadmap’, its plan to become a net-zero-carbon airport by 2033. SunExpress and Anadolujet began operating from BHX.

EasyJet launched its Nantes route. Jet 2 celebrated five years at BHX. Flybe, based at BHX, began operating again. 

Jet2 staff celebrate 5 years of operation at Birmingham Airport.
Photo Credit: Birmingham Airport

May: (78% of May 2019)

BHX switched to renewably sourced electricity.

EasyJet launched its Malaga route.

A hive of bees discovered on an aircraft stand was relocated to a nearby wood on World Bee Day.

June: (83% of June 2019)

BHX announced its plan to invest more than £20m in a new security screening area.

July: (82% of July 2019)

Emirates or Turkish Airlines aircraft both flew with record passenger loads, exceeding 98%, on their aircraft.

SOHO Coffee opened its new airside outlet.

In the lead-up to the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, which started on 28 July and ran until 8 August, BHX began welcoming athletes from around the world.

August: (83% of Aug 2019)

BHX published its annual emissions report showing a 12% increase on 2020/21, when airport operations were reduced almost to nil due to Covid. 

September: (86% of Sep 2019)

Air India announced its plans to increase flights from one a week to six.

October: (88% of Oct 2019)

Aegean Airlines announced its return to BHX. Loganair announced increases to its 2023 summer schedule.

BHX’s electricity consumption fell by 10% on 2019 levels. Work started on BHX’s new pre-flight security screening area.

November: (80% of Nov 2019)

easyJet added Lisbon to its BHX routes. Ryanair added a fifth aircraft to its fleet based at BHX and announced it would add a sixth in summer 2023.

BHX carried out £2m of airfield maintenance work and announced plans to switch its high-mast lights to low-energy LEDs.

December: 1st to 18th (86% of Dec 2019)

easyJet added Milan to its BHX routes.

BHX advised customers on the impacts of Border Force strikes.

Charlie Yates, aged seven, became an air traffic controller.

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By Len Varley - Assistant Editor 5 Min Read
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