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Airport Ground and Cargo Handling Services Market, Size, Share & COVID-19 Impact Analysis, By Service (Passenger Handling, Baggage Handling, Cargo and Mail Handling, Aircraft Handling, Ramp Handling, and Others), By Airport Type (Domestic and International), By Infrastructure Type (Greenfield Airport and Brownfield), and Regional Forecast, 2022-2029

Region : Global | Format: PDF | Report ID: FBI105327



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The global airport ground and cargo handling services market size was valued at USD 32.21 billion in 2021. The market is projected to grow from USD 34.52 billion in 2022 to USD 68.67 billion by 2029, exhibiting a CAGR of 10.32% during the forecast period. The global COVID-19 pandemic has been unprecedented and staggering, with airport ground and cargo handling services experiencing lower-than-anticipated demand across all regions compared to pre-pandemic levels. Based on our analysis, the global market exhibited a decline of 34.80% in 2020 as compared to 2019.


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Airport ground and cargo handling services refer to taking care of aircraft while at the terminal. Services include passenger handling, baggage handling, lamp handling, catering, and more. Increasing air traffic around the world and the development of new airports in developing countries will drive demand for these services during the forecast period. As per the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the number of passengers in 2037 will be 8.2 billion.


During COVID-19 Pandemic, the Aviation Industry Faced Unprecedented Challenges

The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic had a dramatic impact on passenger transport, related services, and revenue. The global airport industry recorded billions of dollars in losses in 2020 due to the pandemic According to the Airports Council, 620 million passengers fell in the first quarter of 2020. The sharp decline in air traffic has significantly reduced revenues at domestic airports and international airports. Therefore, despite the high fixed costs unavoidable for airports, airport authorities have been able to terminate infrastructure projects, delay capital investment, minimize investment in airport services, and address employment costs. The focus is on reducing variable cost.

The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic had a dramatic impact on passenger transport. Airlines around the world are also focusing on reducing active fleet sizes to minimize operating costs. Therefore, reducing the number of active fleets at the airport will reduce the demand for airport services and hinder the airport ground and cargo handling services market growth.


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Increasing Demand for IoT-enabled Solutions from Multiple End-use Industries to Boost Market Growth

The latest technology trend is the Internet of Things (IoT) solutions based on cloud router technology. The Nimbus gateway connects the fence device to the cloud router. The main features of cloud router technology are real-time alerts, a user-friendly interface, and an advanced logging system. A cloud router is a technically advanced gateway that routes signal connections between the administrator of the cloud router and the users of the electric fence and devices in their respective areas. Extensive use of cloud router technology in warehouse security management is utilized. The market is expected to grow as more companies in the U.S. adopt IoT-based cloud router technology for warehouse security.


Expansion of Existing Airports and New Airport Projects to Boost the Market Growth

A continued increase in air travel in developing countries, such as China and India, will lead to an increasing number of new airports in all countries. Increased government investment and modernization of old airports are driving the market growth. New airports are constantly being developed, and the modernization of existing airports will improve the customer experience in the coming years. In addition, increased demand for longer runways, upgraded air traffic control systems, and improved gate capacity is expected to drive market growth. Airport expansion projects around the world will lead to increased demand for low-cost ground handling and freight facilities and services offered at the airport.

By 2037, the number of passengers will double to 8.2 billion, according to a report by the International Air Transport Association (IATA). China would become the largest aviation market by 2024. The IATA report states that India will be ranked third and will surpass the U.K. by 2024. In addition, the Ministry of Civil Aviation's Vision 2040 report says that by 2040, there will be 190-200 operating airports in India. Therefore, as the number of airports increases, the demand for airport ground and cargo handling services will increase, driving the market growth.

Increased Demand for Low-Cost Carriers and Domestic Flights to Drive Market Growth

In recent years, low-cost carriers have achieved rapid growth due to global urbanization and increased economic activity. In addition, increasing demand for travel and tourism and ease of travel support market growth. The growing demand for low-cost airlines is expected to bring about the rapid development of low-cost airports and facilitate the introduction of more airports and cargo handling services. In addition, the increase in the middle class population in developing countries is the main reason for the increase in passenger air traffic. Due to the fast development of the economy, tourism, and other fields, the demand for domestic travel is increasing. Therefore, domestic demand will increase. This drives the market growth.

According to the ICRA report, the number of domestic air passengers increased by 67% in October 2021. The number of domestic air travelers in the U.S. in May 2021 was 51.7 million, an increase of 561% from the same month last year (7.8 million). Russia's S7 Airlines plans to bring low-cost carriers to the market. The first flight of the new Russian low-cost carrier is scheduled for July 2022. By 2024, the low-cost carrier S7 Airlines will have more than 20 aircraft in its fleet. In addition, Canada plans to launch a new ultra-low-cost airline, Lynx Air, in 2022. Therefore, increasing demand for low-cost airlines and rising domestic passenger numbers are driving the market growth.

Increasing Demand for Air Freight is Expected to Drive Market Growth

In recent years, air freight has continued to offer advantages such as fastest delivery, high levels of security, and reduced risk of damage and theft. It's growing reliable arrival and departure times and low premiums. As per the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Air Cargo Market Analysis, air cargo expanded significantly in February 2021. The industry-wide cargo ton-kilometer (CTK) increased by 9% compared to February 2019, an improvement from the 4.1% increase in January. North American airlines contributed 4.6% to the 9.4% growth rate in May 2021. In addition, Boeing released the "World Air Cargo Forecast 2020-2039" forecast report. It states that global cargo ships will increase by more than 60%, from 4,444 to 3,260 over the next 20 years. It also says that Asia will lead the growth of average air cargo annually, China will grow at 5.8% annually, and the East Asian and Oceania markets will grow at 4.9% annually. According to data from the 2015 Air Transport Yearbook (ANAC, 2016), the number of passengers paying for air transport in Brazil's domestic and international markets increased from 63.5 million in 2008 to 112.5 million in 2017. Therefore, the increasing demand for air freight transportation for the safe and fast delivery of goods is driving the growth of the market.


Limited Lifespan and Operational Risks Related to Ground Processing Equipment to Limit Market Growth

Airlines have a wide range of implementations of high-quality airport systems and a wide range of ways to improve passenger travel experience in the shortest possible time. The focus is on providing airport ground and cargo handling services Therefore, airlines must make huge initial investments to provide improved aircraft and passenger support services. However, regular replacement of short-life airport systems incurs additional costs. The product life of ground processing equipment is 6 to 9 years and needs to be replaced after a certain period of time. Therefore, the initial investment and the limited life of airport ground processing equipment will restrain the growth of the market.

In addition, risks associated with the operation of ground treatment equipment, such as lifting injuries, contact with moving vehicles, and aircraft collisions with ground treatment equipment, are hindering the market growth. In addition, refueling and the danger of refueling can lead to fuel fires or spills due to equipment malfunction, distraction, and improper procedures. Therefore, the limited life of ground processing equipment and the regular replacement of airport systems due to operational risk are hampering the market growth.


By Service Analysis

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Cargo and Mail Processing Segment Achieves the Fastest Growth Due to Increased Demand from Emergency Cargo Services

Based on service, the airport ground and cargo handling services market is divided into baggage handling, passenger handling, cargo and mail handling, aircraft handling, ramp handling, and others. In 2021, the passenger handling segment had an overwhelming market share. Passenger service facilitates the efficient movement of passengers from initial check-in to boarding.

The baggage handling segment recorded a significant market share in 2021. This is due to technological advances in OEM baggage handling systems and growing security concerns at airports. Meanwhile, increasing demand for aircraft unloading, pushback, loading planning, shunting, surface maintenance, and airport transportation is surging the demand for ramp processing services.

The cargo and mail handling services segment is expected to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period. Increasing demand for air freight to transport goods, such as emergency medical services, during a pandemic is expected to surge the demand for cargo and mail processing services during the forecast period.

By Airport Type Analysis

Increasing International Travel After Suspension of Travel Restrictions to Boost Segment Growth

Based on airport type, the market is divided into domestic and international. The domestic segment reached its maximum share in 2021. The increase in domestic flights is expected to drive segment growth due to increased development in tourism, business, and other sectors. According to the World Airport Transport Service, the CAGR of domestic passenger traffic is expected to be 10.00% between 2022 and 2029. Increased air traffic in emerging markets such as China and India will drive market growth.

Meanwhile, the international segment will provide gradual growth in 2022-2029. This increase is due to an increase in international air passenger transport around the world, growth in the number of airports and airlines, and increased spending on air travel. As per the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), global passenger traffic will increase by 4.2% each year over the next 20 years.

By Infrastructure Type Analysis

Greenfield Airport to Hold Dominance in Forecast Years Owing to Increased Demand for Smart Airport Infrastructure

Based on infrastructure type, the market of airport ground and cargo handling services is divided into Greenfield airport and Brownfield. The Greenfield airport segment, on the other hand, is projected to show a significant CAGR over the period 2022-2029. Increasing number of Greenfield airport projects in different countries will drive segment growth. Moreover, the demand for smart airport infrastructure is increasing significantly. Thus, higher growth numbers are anticipated during the forecast period. For instance,

  • Beijing Daxing International Airport, China's Greenfield Airport, opened in September 2019. In India, Bogaplum Greenfield Airport is scheduled to open by 2022.

The Brownfield segment was the largest segment in 2021 and will continue to dominate over the forecast period. This increase is due to increased spending on airport modernization and expansion. In 2020, Telangana, a state of India, planned to revitalize three old airports and create three Greenfield airports.


North America Airport Ground and Cargo Handling Services Market Size, 2021 (USD Billion)

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This market is segmented into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and the rest of the world by region.

The North American airport ground and cargo handling services market had the largest share in the base year. The market size in 2021 was USD 11.37 billion. This growth is due to the presence of most airports, the thriving aviation industry, and increased spending on airport modernization.

During the forecast period, the European market is expected to grow moderately. This growth is due to growth in air travel in countries such as the U.K., Germany, and France. Increasing spending on the aviation sector will also boost market growth across Europe.

The Asia Pacific market is expected to record the highest growth during the forecast period. Increased international and domestic passenger transport is expected to support market growth. In addition, large investment in new airport projects in India will surge the demand for improved airport ground and cargo handling services. Rise in demand for IoT-based interface at airports for better customer experience and surveillance activities is also driving the market in Asia Pacific.

The market growth in other parts of the world is due to the development of smart airports. Increasing number of tourists in the Middle East also drives the market growth. The growth of the Latin American market is attributed to rising investment for construction and automation of existing airports in Brazil and Mexico.


Key Players are Focused on Providing a Variety of Cost-Effective Services to Survive in the Market

The competitive environment of the market is highly fragmented due to the presence of several major players such as Fraport AG, Dnata, and Swissport International AG. These companies are focusing on providing cost-effective services such as passenger and baggage handling, lamp handling, catering, and cargo handling. All of these companies provide ground and cargo handling services at the airport in accordance with the Airport Handling Manual (AHM) 810 guidelines of the International Air Transport Association (IATA)


  • Dnata (UAE)

  • Menzies Aviation (Scotland)

  • Swissport International AG (Switzerland)

  • Havas Ground Handling Co. (Turkey)

  • Çelebi Ground Handling (Turkey)

  • Aviapartner Group (Belgium)

  • Worldwide Flight Services (France)

  • Fraport AG (Germany)

  • Airport Associates (Iceland)

  • Qatar Aviation Services (Qatar)

  • AirPart GmbH (Germany)


  • February 2022 - Havaş acquired MZLZ Ground Handling Services to work at Zagreb Airport (ZAG). With this new arrangement, Zagreb has become the 31st air terminal in Havaş' portfolio. Havaş has announced that it will be starting to provide airport services in Zagreb, Croatia.

  • January 2022- Miles & More and Fraport signed a strategic partnership. The air terminal administrator at Frankfurt Airport plays an important role in the airport's reliability program. Fraport AG will be a primary partner of Miles & More, and subsequently will be a co-distributor of the Honors Program at Germany's largest aviation hub.

  • February 2022- Menzies Aviation has secured an agreement with Ultra Air to give full ground handling services at four air terminals. As a feature of a three-year contract, Menzies will give full ground dealing with administrations to Ultra Air at Colombia's four biggest air terminals: Bogotá (BOG), Medellin (MDE), Barranquilla (BAQ), and Cali (CLO).

  • March 2021 - Swissport International signed an agreement with the International Airlines Group (IAG) to give air terminal ground Services to IAG's carriers at the new Berlin Brandenburg International Airport (BER) for a considerable length of time.

  • September 2021- Sri Lankan Airlines has become the primary new client at the Worldwide Flight Services' (WFS) at London Heathrow. The carrier has granted WFS with a 32-month contract for airside transport for its Airbus A330-300 flights interfacing London and Colombo.


An Infographic Representation of Airport Ground and Cargo Handling Services Market

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The report provides detailed information on the market and focuses on aspects such as service, airport type, infrastructure type, and key players. In addition, the report provides insights into airport ground and cargo handling services trends, competitive environment, market competition, product prices, and market conditions, focusing on key industry developments. In addition to the above factors, it contains several factors that have contributed to the sizing of the global market in recent years.

Report Scope & Segmentation



Study Period


Base Year


Estimated Year


Forecast Period


Historical Period



Value (USD Billion)


By Service, Airport Type, Infrastructure Type, and Geography

By Service

  • Passenger Handling

  • Baggage Handling

  • Cargo and Mail Handling

  • Aircraft Handling

  • Ramp Handling

  • Others

By Airport Type

  • Domestic

  • International


By Infrastructure Type

  • Greenfield Airport

  • Brownfield


  • North America (By Service, Airport Type, Infrastructure Type, and Country)

    • U.S. (By Airport Type)

    • Canada (By Airport Type)

  • Europe (By Service, Airport Type, Infrastructure Type, and Country)

    • U.K. (By Airport Type)

    • Germany (By Airport Type)

    • France (By Airport Type)

    • Italy (By Airport Type)

    • Rest of Europe (By Airport Type)

  • Asia Pacific (By Service, Airport Type, Infrastructure Type, and Country)

    • China (By Airport Type)

    • India (By Airport Type)

    • Japan (By Airport Type)

    • Australia (By Airport Type)

    • Rest of Asia Pacific (By Airport Type)

  • Rest of the World (By Service, Airport Type, Infrastructure Type, and Country)

    • Middle East & Africa (By Airport Type)

    • Latin America (By Airport Type)

Frequently Asked Questions

Fortune Business Insights stated that the global market size was USD 32.21 billion in 2021 and is projected to reach USD 68.67 billion by 2029.

Registering a CAGR of 10.32%, the market will exhibit rapid growth during the forecast period (2022-2029).

The passenger handling segment is expected to dominate the market during the forecast period.

Çelebi Ground Handling, Fraport AG, Swissport International AG, and Dnata are the leading players in the global market.

North America topped the market in terms of share in 2021.

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