Although it has yet to confirm its final year-end figures, the world's busiest gateway, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, is sure to maintain its lofty status after becoming the first gateway to break the 100 million passengers per annum miletone on December 28.
The moment was of such significance that Atlanta Mayor, Kasim Reed, was there to saviour the moment and greet the 100 millionth passenger – Larry Kendrick who arrived on a Delta Air Lines flight from Gulfport, Mississippi.
"Today, we are making aviation history,” said Mayor Reed. “As we move into 2016, it is our commitment to maintain our position as the world’s most travelled airport, the most efficient, and soon we will start competing to be the most sustainable.”
Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport's general manager, Miguel Southwell, enthused: “What a year it has been."
He cited both the growth of Atlanta as a destination and a strong partnership between ATL and Delta Air Lines as the main explanation for the 5% increase in traffic over the previous year. Officials had projected a 2% upturn at the start of 2015.
“Without Delta, we simply would not be standing here today," noted Southwell.
As part of the celebration, Kendrick was given a 2015 Nissan Altima from Nissan of Union City; two Delta One round-trip tickets good for any destination in the world; a $500 Thanks Again gift card; and a set of wireless headphones from InMotion Entertainment group.
Miami International Airport
Miami International Airport today announced that it handled a record 44 milion passengers in 2015, shattering its previous best of 40.9mppa set in 2014.
And the good times have rolled into 2016 already with the airport setting a new daily record of 159,217 passengers on January 2, 2016.
“These record-setting numbers were exclamation points on another amazing year at MIA,” says Miami-Dade Aviation Director Emilio T González.
“Adding three million more passengers in 2015 means a huge influx of business revenue and job creation for our local tourism industry.
"This year, we expect to remain on an upward trend with even more new international airlines and routes starting service, as well as our existing carriers continuing to flourish. We look forward to yet another record-breaking year at MIA.”
Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez notes: “From start to finish, 2015 was a year of tremendous achievements at our County’s largest economic engine, and the entire community should be extremely proud of what they have accomplished."
Nice Côte d'Azur Airport
Nice Côte d'Azur Airport in France welcomed an all-time high of 12 million passengers in 2015– a rise of 3.1% on the previous year and its fifth successive annual increase.
Dominique Thillaud, chairman of the board of Aéroports de la Côte d'Azur attributes the airport's success to the hard work of his team and all airport stakeholders as well as the appeal of the region, France, and neighbouring principality of Monaco and Italy.
He says that the French gateway's mission is to convince airlines to launch direct connections from Nice to boost the local economy, and to this end he reveals that €75 million will be invested on renovating its two terminals thjis year.
Athens International Airport
Athens International Airport recorded an all-time high performance, with 18.1 million passengers – a 19% rise on 2014 and 1.5 million (+9.4%) more than the previous best ever year, which was the pre-crisis year 2007.
Both domestic and international passengers achieved record levels, reaching 6.4 million and 11.7 million, demonstrating strong growth levels of 22.1% and 17.4%, respectively.
According to the airport, this growth was driven by both the foreign visitors’ dynamic growth of 26%, as well as the Greek travellers’ robust rise of 11%.
During the year 2015, 9 new airlines and 10 new routes were added to the Athens International Airport’s network, with an equally important increase (+29%) of destinations served by LCCs. These positive developments resulted in an increase of 19% in weekly frequencies.
Moreover, in 2015, a significant (+38%) rise was recorded by transfer passengers, with the international to international transfer traffic marking an impressive (+60%) increase, demonstrating the significant enhancement of Athens’s connectivity.