Home » Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport Sees Busiest Year Ever

Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport Sees Busiest Year Ever

by Pleasant View

2023 was a monumental year for Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport with a record-breaking day, national and international honors, and new innovations. The year-end passenger numbers for America’s Friendliest Airport show that Sky Harbor has reached a new passenger milestone, and 2023 is the busiest year ever in its history.

More than 48.8 million travelers passed through Phoenix Sky Harbor last year, surpassing the previous record set in 2019 when nearly 46.3 million passengers were served. The year-end passenger total for Phoenix Sky Harbor was 5.6% higher than 2019 and 10.1% higher than 2022.

“The record-breaking number of passengers Phoenix Sky Harbor saw in 2023 is a testament to the efficiency of our airport and of the strong guest experience we offer travelers and businesses,” said Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego. “I’m so proud to see our state’s number one economic engine in the state shine, particularly on the fronts of innovation and customer service. The Airport has accomplished so much over the last year, and I look forward to welcoming new investments, development, and programs in 2024.”

In February 2023, Phoenix Sky Harbor recorded its busiest day ever the day after the Super Bowl by hosting more than 200,000 people through its doors on February 13. PHX saw strong numbers throughout 2023 with each month being busier than 2019 numbers. These numbers were bolstered due to major events such as the Super Bowl, W.M. PHX Open, Spring Training, and the World Series.

Throughout the year, the Airport focused on elevating the customer experience for airport visitors. This included expanding innovations like autonomous vehicle pick-ups with Waymo from the 44th Street PHX Sky Train® Station to the 24th Street Station as well as terminal curbs in the evening. In 2022, Phoenix Sky Harbor was the first airport in the country to launch Mobile ID for Apple Wallet users. In 2023, Mobile ID was expanded to Google Wallet and Samsung Wallet. Last summer, America’s Friendliest Airport, which has long been focused on being accessible, launched its first-ever Dementia Friendly Air Travel Workshop to offer caregivers a first-hand look at how to travel more easily with those experiencing dementia. The workshop was a resounding success and received several honors including from Airports Council International-North America and Banner Health, and the Airport’s accessibility efforts were also highly commended by International Airport Review.
Additionally, 2023 saw the opening of new shops and restaurants on its new Eighth Concourse in Terminal 4. Restaurants included local favorites like Sip Coffee and Beer and Pedal Haus Brewery as well as nationally recognized Chick-fil-A and the first ever Bobby’s Burgers by celebrity chef Bobby Flay in an airport. New concessions included InMotion Entertainment and Uptown Phoenix which feature local brands like Changing Hands Bookstore and Melrose Pharmacy. 2024 will see additional openings on the concourse including the Chase Sapphire Lounge, SanTan Spirit House, Guy Fieri’s Phoenix Kitchen + Bar, Fan Shop by PGA Tour, and Arizona Roadtrip.

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In 2023, Phoenix Sky Harbor also saw airlines boost their service to Phoenix. Twenty-one new destinations were added to the Airport’s already robust air service offerings and two new airlines made their home at Phoenix Sky Harbor – Flair and Lynx Airlines.

All of the enhancements and activity culminated in Phoenix Sky Harbor being named the number one airport among large airports by The Wall Street Journal in November.

2024 has also already been off to a strong start with the announcement of a new airline to Phoenix – Air France. Air France’s entry into the Phoenix market with three times weekly service between Phoenix and Paris will be a first for the state. Service to France begins May 23. Additionally, American will launch nonstop service between Phoenix and Tijuana, Mexico on February 15. This marks the only international service from Tijuana into the United States. In May, Condor Airlines returns with its Phoenix to Frankfurt flight. This flight will feature Condor’s new, fuel-efficient Airbus A330-900neo, the most planet-friendly aircraft in the skies.

The Airport has plans to invest more than $3 billion dollars in projects over the next six years to improve safety, capacity, efficiency and elevate the passenger experience. These include a new north-south taxiway to get aircraft to their gates faster, a new six gate concourse at Terminal 3 and a post-security walkway between Terminals 3 and 4.

More information about Phoenix Sky Harbor’s future development projects can be found here.

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