Atlanta Still World’s Busiest Airport

by Megan Hill

Oct 7, 2019

TF Atlanta Airport. Photo: Thomas Barrat | Dreamstime.com

Feature

Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport is still the busiest passenger airport in the world for the 21st year running, according to recent data from Airports Council International.

In the last year, more than 107 million travelers passed through ATL, a 3.3 percent increase over the year before. The data also showed passenger numbers growing globally, with an estimated 8.8 billion passengers in 2018, a 6.4 percent increase over 2017.

The report says growth moderated some compared to 2017, but passenger traffic remained resilient despite increasing uncertainties in the global economy. The 2018 increase is still above the 5.8 percent compounded average annual growth rate for passenger traffic seen from 2010 through 2018.

These regions saw the highest number of travelers last year:

– Asia-Pacific (3.3 billion, +8.1 percent)

– Europe (2.4 billion, +6.4 percent)

– North America (2 billion, +5 percent)

– Latin America-Caribbean (651 million, +5 percent)

– Middle East (396 million, +0.7 percent)

– Africa (214 million, +9.4 percent)

“Protectionist rhetoric — fueled by isolationist policies — has swept several major economies in recent times and this has translated into a dismantling of established open trade relationships and regimes,” said Angela Gittens, World Director General, ACI. “Because aviation has strong links to the global economy and to local development through commerce and tourism, these new barriers may restrain the efficient flow of people, goods, and services; air transport very much relies on open markets to grow. If these isolationist policies persist, their adverse effects will continue to stifle output growth in many countries. Economies that rely more on exports or carry higher debt loads will be most sensitive to a downturn, further exacerbating economic conditions.”

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