Mid-2023 Brings Boost in Air Travel on US West Coast

Passenger traffic totals at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) in July 2023 reached 7.308 million, representing a 15.17% increase compared to the same period in 2022, according to the latest data released by Los Angeles World Airports, the owner-operator of LAX and Van Nuys Airport.

These figures demonstrate a trend of recovery, following the pandemic’s peak when numbers dropped by 82.01% in July 2020 versus July 2019. Pre-pandemic travel at LAX from January 2019 to July 2019 saw 51.519 million passengers, which is 8.561 million more than January 2023 to July 2023 at 42.951 million passengers.

2023-west-coast-airport-dataIn the first seven months of 2023, LAX saw a 15.97% increase in passenger volumes compared to 2022. International travel for LAX in July 2023 was 2.26 million passengers, which is up 23.77% year-over-year compared to July 2022’s global travel volumes at 1.82 million. Domestic travel for July totaled 5.045 million passengers, rising 11.68% compared to July 2022’s 4.517 million passengers.

However, air freight cargo volumes for LAX during July 2023 were down by almost 24% versus July 2022, according to the data.

San Francisco International Airport has seen a steady increase in passenger traffic over the last few years, with a 17.6% growth to 4.968 million in July 2023 from 4.226 million in July 2022.

The pandemic had a significant impact on passenger volume at SFO, with July 2020 seeing an 86.4% decline in passenger traffic compared to pre-pandemic July 2019. Domestic travel was hit particularly hard, experiencing an 83% drop during the pandemic, while international travel out of San Francisco declined by 95.3%. 

However, San Francisco International Airport bounced back in 2022 with a 54.7% increase in passenger traffic from 2.73 million travelers in 2021 to 4.226 million in 2022. And the trend continued in 2023, with another 17.6% increase in passenger traffic to 4.968 million passengers.

2018-2022-west-coast-airport-dataPortland International Airport experienced a significant decline in passenger traffic during the pandemic, with a 63% decrease in total passengers from 2019 to 2020.

However, the airport has begun to recover in recent years with a rebound in total passengers to 1.703 million in 2021 and 1.98 million in 2022.

In July 2023, the total number of air passengers at Portland International Airport increased by 13.38% from the previous year, with 275,515 passengers. Year-to-date, the total number of passengers has increased by 10.49% from January to August 2022 to January to August 2023.

Chart data sources: Los Angeles World Airports, the owner-operator of LAX and Van Nuys Airport, and San Francisco International Airport 

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