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30 Busiest Airports in the World by Flights Per Day

In this piece, we will take a look at the 30 busiest airports in the world by flights per day. For more cities, head on over to 5 Busiest Airports in the World by Flights Per Day.

Modern day air travel is nothing short of a miracle. Every day, thousands of massive machines weighing hundreds of tons take to the skies and ferry people thousands of kilometers all over the world. Human flight, or commercial flight at the scale that we see it today, is a relatively new phenomenon and one that was not widely available even a hundred years ago. As is the case with several crucial technologies, such as the Internet, commercial aviation also owes its existence to a large extent to military development.

The Second World War was the real stimulant for commercial aviation. This is due to the fact that not only did the jet engine made it to fighter aircraft during the tail end of the conflict, but the war also provided companies with the experience to develop huge metallic beats for bombing and ferrying cargo and troops. This experience was transferred to the commercial sector, and several aircraft used during the war such as the Douglas DC-3 were converted for civilian use.

At the same time, airplanes are only one half of the global aviation industry. The other half is airports. After all, airplanes require a controlled environment suitable to handle their stress for take off and landing, and specialized facilities capable of handling thousands of passengers smoothly and directing them to the right aircraft are needed to ensure that there are no breakdowns. Therefore, it's no surprise that the global aircraft industry is worth quite a bit. In fact, according to research from Allied Markets Research, the global airport ground handling market was worth a sizeable $31.8 billion in 2022. From then until 2032, the market is expected to grow at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.2% to sit at an estimated $76.1 billion by the end of. the forecast period. The industry is made up of a variety of sectors such as cargo handling, passenger handling, and ramp handling. This growth will be influenced by a variety of factors such as more airports being built and a growth in air passenger transport and rising living standards requiring more airports to be built.

This growth will prove to be a respite for some of the largest airport management companies in the world such as Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:AAWW), Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico (NYSE:PAC), and Grupo Aeroportuario dl Srst SAB CV (NYSE:ASR) (for more airport stocks you can check out 12 Best Airport Stocks To Buy) since the industry was dealt a massive blow by the coronavirus pandemic. According to data from Airports Council International, the pandemic was almost a death knell for the industry as it removed an eye popping 4.6 billion passengers from the market in 2021 as compared to 2019. This reduced the traffic by 50.4%, and looking into the future, traffic is expected to grow to 2019 levels only by the end of 2024. Regionally speaking, the North American market is expected to undergo a faster recovery and touch pre-coronavirus levels by this year, while all other regions should follow a 2024 timeline.

Finally, taking a look at the on ground situation, the management of Grupo Aeroportuario del Centro Norte, S.A.B. de C.V. (NASDAQ:OMAB), a Mexican airport operator, shared during its recent earnings call that business boomed in 2022:

We believe there is room for strong and continued passenger traffic growth prospects as business opportunities in Mexico continue to expand. As a result of our solid performance, 12-month passenger traffic stood at a new record level of 23.2 million passengers which represents a 29% growth as compared to 2021 and has outpaced by 0.2% our 2019 levels. I am proud to say that the effects of the pandemic and traffic performance are clearly behind this. On the financial performance front, aeronautical and non-aeronautical revenues reached record levels in 2022, growing each by 22% versus 2019. As a result, our adjusted EBITDA for the year was MXN7.1 billion, 27% above 2019 and we set a new record for our adjusted EBITDA margin which expanded to 76.3%, aided importantly by our continued efficiency in our cost and expense structure.

With these details in mind, let's take a look at the busiest airports in the world.

30 Busiest Airports in the World by Flights per Day
30 Busiest Airports in the World by Flights per Day

Pixabay/Public Domain

Our Methodology

To compile our list of the world's busiest airports we used data from the Swedish firm WESTCOAST DIGITAL AB's FlightsForum to sift out the airports with the highest number of flights. This data was cross checked with the Airport Council International's list of the world's busiest airports with the most flights to ensure that it is authentic and reliable. The list of the thirty busiest airports in the world by daily flights is as follows.

Busiest Airports in the World by Flights per Day

30. Xi'an Xianyang International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 487

Xi'an Xianyang International Airport is the main airport for China's Guanzhong region. It is a four star airport and the second largest airport in Northern China.

29. Boston Logan International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 491

Boston Logan International Airport is the busiest airport in the American Northeast outside of New York State. The airport is a hundred years old and serves a variety of global destinations.

28. Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 494

Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport is close to the city of Phoenix, Arizona. The aircraft opened in 1928 and it is Arizona's largest airport.

27. Kunming Changshui International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 508

The Kunming Changshui International Airport is the main airport of the Chinese province of Yunnan Province. It is one of the youngest airports on our list, being set up in 2009.

26. Orlando International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 508

Orlando International Airport was set up in 1940 and consistently ranks in the list of the top ten busiest airports in the U.S. It was originally built for use by the Air Force.

25. George Bush Intercontinental Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 509

The George Bush Intercontinental Airport is the busiest international airport in Texas and sees airplanes fly to five of the seven continents in the world.

24. LaGuardia Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 513

LaGuardia Airport is located in New York City, New York. It has several rules that place limits on airlines and was set up in 1939.

23. Frankfurt Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 514

The Frankfurt Airport is one of Germany's largest airports in terms of passenger traffic. It is also one of Europe's busiest airports.

22. Beijing Capital International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 523

The Beijing Capital International Airport is one of China's oldest airports, having been set up in 1958. It is also one of China's busiest airports and one of two primary airports in Beijing.

21. Soekarno-Hatta International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 524

The Soekarno-Hatta International Airport opened in 1965 and it often ended up being over-capacitated due to the vast number of tourism flights to Indonesia.

20. Heathrow Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 524

Heathrow Airport is the largest airport in the U.K. and one of the busiest airports in the world in terms of passenger traffic. It started out as a small airfield and has remarkably grown in a few decades.

19. Harry Reid International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 529

Harry Reid International Airport is the main airport of Las Vegas, Nevada - one of America's premier tourism destinations. It was set up in 1942 and one of its busiest destinations is Los Angeles.

18. Dubai International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 529

Dubai International Airport is Dubai's largest airport and one of the busiest in the world in terms of passenger traffic. Given Dubai's position as a global tourism destination, its inclusion in our list of the busiest airports by flight traffic is unsurprising.

17. Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 538

Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport is France's largest international airport. It was set up in 1974 and handles millions of passengers each year.

16. Shenzhen Bao'an International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 541

The Shenzhen Bao'an International Airport serves China's Guangdong province. It was set up in 1991 and is a hub of some of China's largest airlines.

15. Amsterdam Airport Schiphol

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 562

The Amsterdam Airport Schiphol is Amsterdam's largest international airport and one of the world's busiest airports as well.

14. Newark Liberty International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 566

The Newark Liberty International Airport is one of America's busiest airports on the East Coast, coming in second only to New York's famous John F. Kennedy airport.

13. Chengdu Tianfu International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 576

The Chengdu Tianfu International Airport is a major airport in China's Sichuan province.

12. Shanghai Pudong International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 582

The Shanghai Pudong International Airport is one of the largest airports in East Asia.

11. John F. Kennedy International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 592

New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport is one of America's most famous airports. It also handles some of the highest amounts of passenger air traffic in North America.

10. Tokyo International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 618

The Tokyo International Airport is the hub of Japan's largest domestic airlines and was set up in 1931.

9. Indira Gandhi International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 629

The Indira Gandhi International Airport is India's busiest airport in terms of daily flight traffic and also one of the busiest in the world.

8. Charlotte Douglas International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 632

The Charlotte Douglas International Airport is a civilian and military airport serving the Charlotte Metropolitan Area.

7. Istanbul Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 651

The Istanbul Airport is one of Europe's busiest airports and handles tens of millions of passengers each year.

6. Los Angeles International Airport

Daily Scheduled Outbound Flights: 653

The Los Angeles International Airport is one of the largest airports on the American West Coast.

 

Click to continue reading and see 5 Busiest Airports in the World by Flights Per Day.

 

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Disclosure: None. 30 Busiest Airports in the World by Flights Per Day is originally published on Insider Monkey.

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