Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport Traffic Is Stronger, But Still Weak

By Christina Estes
Published: Monday, August 31, 2020 - 5:05am
Updated: Monday, August 31, 2020 - 7:48am

empty gate at terminal 3
Christina Estes/KJZZ
The new south concourse in Terminal 3 includes 15 gates.

Traffic is picking up at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.

In July, the airport saw 1,351,807 passengers, down 64.7% compared to July 2019 when the airport welcomed 3,832,564 passengers. But it’s significantly better than April when traffic was down 93%.

“If it stays that way with the rest of the year it would be discouraging, but it would not surprise us,” said Jim Bennett, Phoenix Aviation Director.

Sky Harbor is forecasting passenger traffic will be down about 50% through the rest of the year. Limited service to Canada has resumed while flights to Europe and Hawaii remain suspended.

Freight traffic is a bright spot — up 14% compared to this time last year.  

A 2017 report by Arizona State University W.P. Carey School of Business Seidman Research Institute the Phoenix airport system’s total economic impact was more than $38 billion per year. The report includes data for Phoenix Sky Harbor, Phoenix Deer Valley and Phoenix Goodyear Airports with the bulk of the impact coming from Sky Harbor.

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