Pacing Toward a Record Year

Contact: Scott Miller
(717) 948-3900 ext. 4620

First Nine Months of 2019 Were the Busiest in Airport History

(Middletown, PA – October 30, 2019) – More flights to more destinations has more passengers choosing Harrisburg International Airport (HIA).  Between January 1st and September 30th, 2019, a record 1,116,688 passengers have flown into and out of Central PA via HIA breaking the previous record of 1,106,208 set in 1997.   

“We are grateful to our airline partners for the increasing flight options they’ve brought to Harrisburg International Airport,” said Timothy J. Edwards, SARAA Executive Director. “With five new nonstop destinations—Sarasota, Nashville, Denver, Orlando International and Dallas/Ft. Worth—and increased flights to Orlando-Sanford, Charlotte, Chicago and Detroit, more people are able to choose the convenience of HIA vs driving hours each way to a faraway airport.” 

Year (Jan – Sep) Total Passengers vs. 2019
2019 1,116,688  
1998 1,106,208 1.0 %
1997 1,093,151 2.2 %
1999 1,070,677 4.4 %
2005 1,048,702 6.6 %

Average Fare Down 11 Percent

Edwards said another advantage of expanded air service are lower fares.  The average one-way fare to all destinations flown from HIA between January and August 2019 declined 11 percent compared to the same time period last year.  The average fare (before taxes and fees) was $225 in 2019 vs $251 in 2018. 

Year-to-date HIA passenger traffic is up 16.8 percent vs. the same time period last year.

American, Allegiant and Frontier Generating the Most Growth

To date in 2019, American Airlines has served 64,639 more passengers than in 2018—the largest increase of all airlines serving the airport.  New daily service to Dallas/Ft. Worth, combined with more flights to Charlotte and Chicago are driving passenger growth.

Allegiant ranked second for new passenger growth serving 43,715 more people this year vs last year due to increased flights to Orlando-Sanford, Punta Gorda and St. Petersburg/Clearwater, and new twice weekly flights to Sarasota and Nashville.

Frontier ranks third on the list serving 40,474 new passengers at HIA.  The airline resumed HIA service in July 2018 with nonstop flights to Orlando International and seasonal service to Denver.

Airline 2019 % change vs 2018 Net new passengers
American 453,454 16.6 64,639
Delta 247,183 6.4 14,859
United 192,619 5.9 10,663
Allegiant 165,711 35.8 43,715
Frontier 55,717 265.5 40,474
Charters/others 1,464 (86.6) (12,995)
Total 721,427 16.8 161,355

Orlando is HIA’s Top Destination 

Nearly 260 people each day fly from HIA to the Orlando region (via Orlando-Sanford on Allegiant and Orlando International on Frontier) making it the most popular 2019 destination.  Chicago ranks second with 145 passengers each day, Atlanta is third at 97 passengers each day, followed by the Tampa region (90 each day) and Denver (60 each day). 

Traffic to New Destinations Taking Off 

Since April, Allegiant’s new twice weekly service to Sarasota has increase traffic 650 percent—from an average of 6.5 people per day to 49.  Since June, Allegiant’s new twice weekly service to Nashville has increased traffic 210 percent—from 19 people a day to 59. 

Meanwhile to Dallas, American’s new daily service has increased local traffic to Dallas by 71 percent—from 29 to 49 people each day.  In addition, an average of 38 people a day are connecting beyond Dallas to destinations primarily in Texas, California, Arizona and Mexico. 

“Thank you to everyone who has supported the expanded service from HIA so far this year,” said Edwards.  “2019 is expected to be our busiest year ever and we look forward to serving even more passengers in 2020.”      

The next SARAA Board meeting will take place on Wednesday, December 4th, 2019 at 8:00 am, in the David C. McIntosh Boardroom, located on the third floor of the HIA terminal building.

About Harrisburg International Airport:
Five airlines serve Harrisburg International Airport (HIA) offering nearly 70 flights daily to 14 year-round and two seasonal non-stop destinations.  The Susquehanna Area Regional Airport Authority (SARAA) owns HIA, Capital City Airport in New Cumberland and both Franklin County and Gettysburg Regional Airports.  Incorporated in 1997, SARAA is a multi-municipal authority whose mission is to serve the region by providing high quality, efficient airports and promoting regional economic development.  Combined these four facilities handle about 90,000 aircraft operations and generate a total economic output of more than $990 million annually.

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