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Modernization of Hévíz-Balaton Airport Aims to Boost Tourism

Hungary Today 2024.04.19.

The HUF 2.2 billion (EUR 5 million) government support for the renewed Hévíz-Balaton Airport will also help boost international tourism and the economy of the whole region. The development of the airport is scheduled to be completed in 2025, Világgazdaság reports.

The Zala County news portal interviewed Attila Benkő, managing director of Hévíz-Balaton Airport, about the ongoing investment, who said that with the large-scale development of the regional airport,

the government is investing in the future of the economy of the region and the wider area, and will also further strengthen international inbound tourism.

Photo via Facebook/Keszthely DronPhoto

The primary objective is to ensure that the airport provides a European standard of service all year round, as a region that is more than two hours’ drive from the country’s central airport and even further away by public transport. Therefore, the region can benefit greatly from having a nearby, operational international commercial airport. According to Benkő, this will allow destinations here to attract foreign tourists who, for reasons of convenience or lack of time, do not want to spend time traveling in the country. In addition, scheduled flights could attract newer clientele, for example business travelers. It is also important to note that the accessibility of local economic operators is greatly enhanced by the possibility of air connectivity, which can attract additional investors, as the example of Debrecen (eastern Hungary) shows. The expert stressed that

Lake Balaton is the second most important tourist destination in the country after Budapest in terms of both domestic and international traffic,

with 8.7 million overnight stays in 2023. This means that last year, 21 percent of the country’s total guest nights were generated here.

View from a Badacsony vineyard (Balaton wine region). Photo: Facebook/Tourinform Badacsony

The importance of Hévíz (western Hungary, some 10 kilometers from the western shore of Lake Balaton) is not negligible either, as it accounted for almost 13 percent of the tourism region’s turnover last year, and the number of German guest nights was higher than in Budapest alone. This is why the launch of a scheduled flight between Dortmund and Hévíz in the summer of 2022, was an important milestone. A questionnaire survey among travelers showed that

the number of visitors from Germany increased not only to Hévíz, but also to Zalakaros (western Hungary) and the surrounding villages.

Thanks to more than HUF 2 billion in government support

  • the runway will be completely renewed
  • the expansion gaps of the runway will be developed
  • and new ILS (instrumental landing system) will be added to assist landing.

The building will be adapted to better accommodate passengers and ensure that it can serve both internal and external Schengen flights at the same time. In addition, energy-efficient lighting will be installed and the terminal’s cooling and heating system will be renewed, not only to make waiting more comfortable for passengers, but also to improve working conditions for airport staff.

First Scheduled Flight Lands at the Revived Pécs Airport
First Scheduled Flight Lands at the Revived Pécs Airport

With the return of scheduled flights to Pécs, the city has become even more a part of the international tourism circuit.Continue reading

Via Világgazdaság; Featured image via Facebook/Keszthely DronPhoto

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