Atlanta Is No Longer the World’s Busiest Airport

2020 was a nightmare year for air traffic, as official data shared by the Airports Council International (ACI) reveals that the number of passengers decreased by no less than 64.6 percent last year.
Seven of the top 10 airports are based in China 1 photo
The reasons are more than obvious, as airlines are still struggling to recover, although some of them already see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Yet airlines themselves aren’t the only ones that got hit by the global health issue; airports have been affected too, with new ACI figures revealing that Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in the United States is no longer the world’s busiest airport.

It is the first time in 22 years when Atlanta loses the top spot, and unsurprisingly, the one that secured the leading position is Guangzhou Bai Yun International Airport in China.

And it’s all because Guangzhou’s decline was smaller than Atlanta’s, as the ACI data show the number of passengers dropped by “just” 40.4 percent in the case of the Chinese airport. The number of passengers flying from Atlanta went down by no less than 61.2 percent last year.

Overall, Guangzhou had 43.7 million passengers in 2020, while Atlanta came pretty close with 42.9 million. Chengdu secured third place in the charts with 40.7 million passengers after recording a drop of 27.1 percent.

The Dallas/Fort Worth airport traffic went down 47.6 percent, but it still managed to grab fourth place with 39.3 million passengers.

The airport that was hit the hardest by the global health issue last year is Beijing (PEK), whose number of passengers collapsed from over 100 million to just 34.5 million (down 65.5 percent).

There’s also some good news, though. The Hongqiao International Airport in China managed to jump no less than 37 places in the charts, becoming the 9th busiest airport in the world after previously being ranked the 46th.

Overall, 7 of the top 10 airports in this analysis are based in China, while the remaining 3 are located in the United States.

press release

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