Thursday, December 1, 2022

ILM airport breaks August passenger record

Wilmington International Airport. (PCD/ Hannah Leyva.)

WILMINGTON — The Wilmington International Airport is having no trouble recovering from the pandemic-induced travel shock.

The airport had the best August on record this year with 106,167 passengers, a 5% increase over the last record month, August 2019. 

September and October have seen an increase in seats in the ILM market and preliminary numbers indicate September will be another record month for passengers, according to a Tuesday press release.

So far this year, ILM is at 102% recovery, making it the 49th most recovered airport of the top 150 airports when comparing the percent of seats in the market this year versus 2019. ILM is also the top recovered airport across North Carolina’s 72 public airports; ILM is closely followed by Asheville at 107% recovered, Charlotte at 97% and RDU at 87%. 

“Our airline partners are upgauging aircraft and increasing the seats in our market,” ILM Airport Director Jeff Bourk said in the release. “These larger aircraft, as well as the new nonstop flights, have resulted in more seats and opportunities for additional passengers.”

Earlier this year, United launched nonstop service to Newark airport, American increased nonstop service to Boston on a daily seasonal service and resumed seasonal service to Chicago, and Delta announced an increase to daily seasonal service to LaGuardia. In May, ILM set a record for the number of May enplanements at ILM. The NCDOT Division of Aviation’s 2020 report estimated ILM’s economic impact at $2.25 billion and 16,385 jobs. 

The Wilmington International Airport serves southeastern North Carolina with commercial air service on American, Avelo, Delta, and United. These air carriers provide nonstop service to thirteen markets, connecting travelers to over 360 destinations. Avelo Airlines, ILM’s newest carrier will begin nonstop service to Fort Lauderdale, beginning Nov. 11.

Editor’s Note: This article has been updated to state ILM’s passenger total is 106,167, not 106,167 million. Port City Daily regrets the error.

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