Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport has been crowned the Overall Winner of this year’s Routes Awards, as well as taking home the over 20 million passenger award.
Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport’s ‘2025 Pioneers’ strategy aims to develop a new airport model geared towards sustainability and performance, in line with societal and environmental expectations. This innovation from CDG has enabled the airport to operate new generation aircraft on 24% of flights this year. With a core focus on increasing direct connectivity and promoting competition between key markets, Charles de Gaulle added 71 new routes and 23 new destinations to its map in 2022, and the airport has now recovered 88% of 2019 passenger traffic levels.
David Dufros, aviation development director at CDG, said: “Paris CDG Aviation Development team is very proud to have won the 20m pax Routes World award this year! We would like to thank our airline partners for this achievement! This is the result of passionate and dedicated work initiated many years ago, for the benefit of our clients. This award encourages us to continue developing air connectivity in a sustainable way.”
In the under 5 million passenger category, Newcastle International Airport was named the winner. Providing cost-effective, tailored and comprehensive marketing and travel trade exposure for their airline partners, Newcastle has welcomed four new airlines and 30 new routes in the last year.
Leon McQuaid, director of aviation development at NCL, said: “We are absolutely delighted to have won this prestigious Routes World award. A big thank you to all of our airline partners for nominating us, which is great recognition for all of our teams’ dedication and hard work to deliver for our airlines.”
The 5-10 million passenger category was won by Larnaka International Airport. Having introduced a new airline incentive scheme in 2022 that focused on new routes, market penetration, and winter operations, LCA has since welcomed nine new airlines and introduced 28 new routes across 2022 and 2023.
Maria Kouroupi, senior manager aviation development, marketing and communication at LCA, said: “It is a great honour to receive this award today. This recognition strengthens our commitment to our airline partners, our stakeholders, and our industry. We are confident that together we will be able to face any challenges and create value for everyone.”
Brussels Airport, winner of the 10-20 million passenger category, provides extensive marketing support for their airline partners, with campaigns over the last year including 10 online activation contests, 16 social media campaigns, and 12 on-airport giant display opportunities. The airport’s traffic has now returned to 90% of 2019 levels, supported by a passenger growth incentive scheme.
Léon Verhallen, director aviation development at BRU, said: “We are delighted that our strategy of ‘have seats, will travel’ is highly appreciated by our airlines. We successfully launched new initiatives to rebuild the network and regain passenger traffic. Five new airlines, 15 new destinations, and a passenger traffic recovery up to 90% of traffic in 2023 are clear evidence of the success of Brussels Airport in our very competitive catchment area.”
Cape Town Air Access was named the winner of the destination category. Collaborating with both public and private entities to enhance air connectivity, Cape Town Air Access has consistently exceeded international passenger recovery rates, achieving 106% of 2019 levels in the year-to-date, with the addition of seven new international airlines and routes in the past year.
David King, project manager at Cape Town Air Access, said: “We are honoured to be recognised for the second year in a row with the Routes World Destination Award. This achievement underscores our belief in the power of passion, creativity, and innovation and the positive results that can be achieved with a small, dedicated team. This award is a testament to the resourcefulness and commitment of all the Cape Town Air Access partners in promoting Cape Town International Airport and the Western Cape province as a destination of choice for airlines and passengers alike and a must-visit place for travellers worldwide.”
Spanish low-cost carrier Vueling secured the airline award. The airline’s focus is on building a sustainable future for the carrier and its partners, putting emphasis on a long-term approach to partnerships. As a result, around 85% of its services stretch beyond the three-year mark, and the airline operates a higher frequency per route than its competitors.
Daniel Johan Reus, Vueling’s network development manager, said: “Vueling is extremely proud to have won the prestigious award for best airline in terms of sustainable growth at the Routes World conference. Our commitment to lasting impact is a testament to the power of perseverance, thoughtful planning, and dedication. This award is not just a recognition of our past successes, but a promise to continue our journey towards a sustainable future.”
The rising star award was won by Tatamo Rakotozafy, head of aviation marketing at Ravinala Airports. Tatamo has been instrumental in improving air connectivity for the airport operator, with achievements including lobbying government authorities to facilitate new routes and the reopening of borders, forming committees to build strong relationships with aviation and tourism stakeholders, and establishing the first financial incentive programme for airports in the country.
The individual leadership award was won by Vicki Jaramillo, chief development officer at Orlando International Airport. Vicki has dedicated her career to connecting the world to Orlando. Her passion for promoting air service stems from her own personal travel experiences, driving her to play a key role in the launch of multiple international routes with major carriers including Emirates, Lufthansa and many more. These achievements have been the product of perseverance, creating strategies unique to each airline’s needs, and developing an expert knowledge in both the quantitative and qualitative data behind a route proposal.
Following the win, she said: “It is a great honor for me to receive this Individual Leadership Award for lifetime achievement in route development. This accomplishment is the pinnacle milestone in my air service development career which has been my passion. I extend my heartfelt gratitude to the entire Routes team and all that enabled me to achieve this recognition.”
The full list of winners:
Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport
Under 5 Million Passengers
Newcastle International Airport
5-10 Million Passengers
Larnaka International Airport
10-20 Million Passengers
Over 20 Million Passengers
Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport
Cape Town Air Access
Tatamo Rakotozafy, Head of Aviation Marketing, Ravinala Airports
Vicki Jaramillo, Chief Development Officer, Orlando International Airport