Gatwick Airport in the UK experienced a 5.3% fall in passenger traffic in 2009 compared with 2008.
The fall was due to nine consecutive months of declining year-on-year traffic.
Last December, however, was the third consecutive month of growth in passenger numbers after the airport recorded a 1.5% rise driven by an increase in the European scheduled market.
European charter flights fell by 20.7% compared with 2008, while north Atlantic flights also dropped by 29.8% due to the Open Skies agreement.
Air transport movements decreased by 4.3% and cargo tonnage also fell 30.6% behind the previous year.
Cargo tonnage did, however, post a growth of 19.2% in December, when compared with the same month last year.