Passenger numbers at Swedish airports declined 4% last year, to around 40 million, from an all-time high the previous year.

Airports operator Swedavia acknowledges that concern around climate-change and the local anti-air-travel “flygskam” or “flight shame” movement as factors in the demand reduction, though it says: “We see a number of reasons concurring.”

The national aviation tax, weak local currency, and a softening economic environment are cited by Swedavia as additional factors.

It stresses the unprecedented air traffic growth between 2012 and last year as passenger numbers grew at around twice the 3% annual average of the past three decades.

In 2019, the number of domestic passengers across Swedavia’s 10 airports declined 9% to 12.4 million. International passenger numbers meanwhile fell 2% to 28 million.

Stockholm Arlanda – the country’s largest airport – saw passenger numbers decline 4% to 25.6 million. Domestic numbers declined at twice the rate of international numbers.

Demand for international flights grew at a number of airports, notably at Gothenburg Landvetter, Sweden’s second-largest airport. But the gateway’s total passenger numbers fell 2% to 6.7 million.

Swedavia notes that domestic demand declined at all its airports last year.