MIAMI – Brussels Airport (BRU) cargo traffic continues to grow steadily, with an increase of 72% over the same period in 2020. 

The strong rise in cargo volumes that began the year has persisted and even accelerated in April, owing largely to the increasing demand for air cargo throughout Europe.

In April, 250,065 passengers passed through Brussels Airport, down 89% from April of 2019. The ban on non-essential travel, which lasted until April 18, 2021, as well as a slew of other travel restrictions and conditions, account for the low numbers.

Cargo vs Passenger Volumes


Unlike passenger numbers, cargo volumes are compared to 2020 estimates since the COVID pandemic had just a minor effect on cargo volumes in 2020. Airfreight has grown significantly in comparison to 2020 in all segments, including the integrator segment (+55%), the full-freighter segment (+59%), and also belly cargo, which has recovered from very low volumes in April 2020 (+492%).

Air Cargo Week reports that BRU sees a general increase in the activities of all current clients in the full-freighter market. The logistics network at BRU has been strengthened by the addition of four new cargo carriers: Azul (AD), Japan Airlines (JL), SpiceJet (SG), and China Central Longhao Airlines (GI). For JL, this would entail belly cargo only.

Vaccine Transport at BRU. Photo: BRU

COVID 19 Vaccine Shipments


Because of the strong growth of online transactions, activity in the integrator segment is operationally higher than in previous years. The amount of imports and exports has increased, especially inbound volumes from Asia and North America.

COVID 19 Vaccine shipments to and from BRU continue to this day, with tens of millions of vaccines treated at the airport, making it a significant center in the global vaccine distribution.


Featured image: Zaventem Brussels Airport. Photo: Wiki Commons