The World's Busiest Airports

January 18th, 2019


If you owned an airline, your company's value would be soaring at 50,000 feet these days. Globally, passenger traffic and cargo traffic increase each year, and there are more aircraft flying around than ever before. The airline industry is experiencing one of the strongest growth rates in its history.

With all those flights to manage, airports all over the world are busier than ever.

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport is the world's busiest airport. Although the US contributes a lot to worldwide air travel totals, China and India are major players too. Those two countries' combined passenger traffic accounts for over 30 percent of the global total. China and India are home to 16 of the fastest-growing airports that serve over 15 million passengers.

In this article, we'll look at the three busiest airports, each of which is uniquely situated as a gateway to global commerce and the cultural exchanges we enjoy through international travel.

Please fasten your seatbelts and return your tray table to its full upright position, we're about to take off, starting with a look at the third busiest airport in the world, Dubai International.

Dubai International Airport—DXB

With 88 million passengers annually, there are only two busier airports in the world than Dubai International Airport. It's the main international hub for air travel in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

There are about 85 airlines running flights out of DXB, but more than half this airport's flights are flown by Emirates Airline.

The airport is only 2.5 miles outside of Dubai, so depending on the length of your layover, you could easily take in a few sights. Dubai is known as a major tourist destination for luxury holidays, and two of its popular attractions are its amazing man-made islands, and the Gold Souk, the city's famous gold market.

Beijing Capital International Airport—PEK

We're ranking airports based on the number of passengers they serve annually, and the top two airports are neck-and-neck. Beijing Capital International Airport's 96 million passengers is an impressive total, but it is 8 million short of the winner's total, so only enough for second place.

PEK serves as the main hub for Air China, which flies to more than 120 destinations. China Southern Airlines, Hainan Airlines, and China Eastern Airlines also do significant business out of Beijing Airport.

If you're ever stuck in this airport waiting for a connection, there are some interesting attractions to help you pass the time. You can take a walk through a miniature imperial garden that features pavilions and bridges like those of the famous Summer Palace. There's also a wide range of Asian cuisine available.

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport—ATL

The busiest airport in the world, with 104 million passengers annually, is Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. Over 250,000 people travel through the terminals of ATL every day!

It's a major port of entry for the entire North American continent, acting as a connection hub for thousands of destinations. If traveling by air, 80 per cent of the US population can get to this airport in two-hours or less.

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport is located about 7 miles outside Georgia's capital city of Atlanta. When you land in Atlanta, you don't necessarily have to grab a connecting flight—the city's vibrant and diverse culture have made it a popular destination city.