Atlanta airport retakes title as busiest in world

ATLANTA — Hartsfield-Jackson International is again the world’s busiest airport, reclaiming the title Atlanta shed when site visitors plummeted through the pandemic.

The Atlanta airport reported more than 75 million passengers in 2021, a far cry from pre-pandemic levels that topped 100 million a yr. But other airports about the globe are also still recovering.

Final year, Atlanta taken care of the most passengers and the most flights of any airport in the world, according to the formal rankings introduced Monday from Airports Council International.

Hartsfield-Jackson reclaimed the title immediately after an airport in China, Guanzhou Bai Yun Worldwide Airport, took the No. 1 spot in 2020. China staged an first pandemic restoration previously than the rest of the world, but some cities, these types of as Shanghai, have reinstated restricted constraints and lockdowns.

Air journey is a essential financial barometer not only for Atlanta but for the globe financial state.

The rankings for 2021 “explain to the story of an encouraging craze of recovery, with most of the recurrent busiest airports pre-covid-19 back at the best,” mentioned ACI Environment Director Typical Luis Felipe de Oliveira in a penned statement.

Hartsfield-Jackson’s passenger counts in 2021 were being up 76.4% from 2020, but even now down nearly 1-3rd from 2019. Considering the fact that the retreat of the omicron variant before this 12 months, domestic site visitors has been nearing pre-pandemic stages.

“Despite the fact that we are cautious that recovery could deal with numerous headwinds, the momentum created by reopening options by nations could guide to an uptick in vacation in the 2nd half of 2022,” de Oliveira explained.

In the No. 2 place for passenger targeted visitors behind Atlanta was Dallas/Fort Worthy of with 62.5 million travellers, jumping up from No. 4 in 2020 and the No. 10 in 2019.

Denver Worldwide Airport came in third in 2021. Chicago O’Hare arrived in fourth with 54 million travellers.

Globally, about 4.5 billion passengers flew by air in 2021, up almost 25% from 2020 but nevertheless just 50 percent of 2019 stages, according to Airports Council International.

With leisure travel recovering the quickest, Orlando Global Airport experienced the largest improvement in passenger website traffic in the earth, with an 86.7% year-over-calendar year improve to 40.4 million travellers, putting it in the No. 7 spot in 2021.

Hartsfield-Jackson claimed 707,661 landings and acquire-offs in 2021, up 29.1% for 2020 but still down 21.7% from 2019.

Atlanta had been displaced in earlier years by Chicago O’Hare in the No. 1 place for flight counts, but Atlanta experienced the most flights in 2020 and 2021.

By Harriet