The Mediterranean's Surging Airline Destinations

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The Mediterranean region stands as one of Europe's most cherished leisure destinations, renowned for its diverse landscapes, balmy summer climes, sandy coastlines, and iconic historical landmarks, drawing millions of visitors each year.

As of the summer of 2023, the capacity for all Mediterranean countries, except for Slovenia, has rebounded to pre-pandemic levels. This resurgence can be attributed to a confluence of factors, including the gradual reopening of borders in the post-pandemic era, a heightened eagerness among people to travel, and effective solutions to the resource and aircraft availability challenges that airlines and airports confronted in 2022.

The Mediterranean spans approximately 22 countries, encompassing European nations such as Spain, Italy, Greece, and Croatia. Each region has witnessed varying levels of activity following the pandemic-induced downturn.

While Turkey maintains its upward trajectory, Spain, France, and Italy remain the most significant markets in terms of international capacity. Spain, in particular, boasted around 144.4 million available seats during the summer of 2023, marking a remarkable 45.6% increase when compared to the same period in 2013.

France closely followed with approximately 109.4 million seats, reflecting a substantial 32.1% surge from the summer of 2013. Italy secured the third spot with nearly 105.3 million seats. Notably, Albania experienced the most remarkable growth, with 5.82 million seats representing a staggering 277% increase since the summer of 2013. Greece witnessed the second-highest growth rate at 147%, trailed by Turkey at 114%, and Croatia, which expanded by 104%.

Rapidly Rising Mediterranean Destinations: A Closer Look

A comprehensive analysis conducted by OAG delves into the Mediterranean's holiday destinations, specifically focusing on those with over one million international seats. The findings unveil the top 15 most swiftly expanding Mediterranean destinations, each of which has surged in international capacity by over 100%. Notably, all these thriving locales are situated in the southeastern Mediterranean region, with Greece prominently featured, boasting seven of these burgeoning destinations.

Within the Hellenic Republic, the island of Santorini (JTR) stands out with an impressive 366% increase in capacity, while Mykonos (JMK) has also experienced significant growth, expanding by 250% over the past decade. Earlier this year, the European Travel Commission confirmed that American holidaymakers were likely to choose Greece as their preferred travel destination for 2023, surpassing Italy and Spain. Greece's allure, defined by its natural beauty and vibrant ambience, continues to captivate an ever-growing number of international travellers.

The top 15 fastest-growing Mediterranean destinations:

Country Growth Percentage Additional Information
Spain +45.6%  
France +32.1%  
Albania +277% Albania is an affordable and open Mediterranean destination.
Greece +147% American holidaymakers are highly likely to visit Greece in 2023.
Turkey +114%  
Croatia +104% Croatia is the newest Schengen Zone country, with Zadar growing rapidly.
Santorini +366% Located in the Cyclades, a hot spot with stunning growth.
Mykonos +250% A Cycladic island that has grown significantly in the last decade.
Tirana +273% Albania's capital and an affordable Mediterranean destination.
Zadar +171% A city in Croatia known for its history, food, and adventure.
Other Destinations +100% Various destinations in the southeastern Mediterranean region.

This chart now provides a summary of the growth percentages and additional information for the top 15 fastest-growing Mediterranean destinations.


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