The United States is home to 50 states and as a result, a large number of airports. Regional routes are almost just as important as international routes and this can see some hefty numbers of passengers visiting airports across the North American country. 

But what are the top 3 busiest airports in the U.S? 

Denver International Airport

Denver International Airport, known locally as DIA, is based in Denver, Colorado, and serves the city domestically and internationally, as well as the greater Front Range Urban Corridor. 

Despite being the largest airport in North America by land area (and the second largest in the world), the airport comes in third in terms of being the busiest in the U.S. 

In 2019, Denver International welcomed nearly 70 million passengers and just over 33 million in 2020 due to the pandemic. In 2021, as the world slowly attempted to move on from covid in the latter stages of the year, the airport saw 58.8 million passengers. 

The airport serves as a base for United Airlines and Frontier Airlines and is a focus city for Southwest Airlines.

And having opened in 1995, the airport currently welcomes non-stop services to 215 different destinations amongst 23 different airlines.

Denver International Airport
Denver International has been rated as a 3-star airport by Skytrax. | © Denver International Airport

Dallas Fort Worth International Airport 

Dallas Fort Worth International Airport comes in as the second busiest airport in the United States. It is the main international airport that serves the huge state of Texas. The airport is also the third-busiest airport in the world by aircraft movements and the second-busiest airport by passenger traffic as of 2021, according to the Airports Council International. 

In 2019, the airport welcomed more than 75 million passengers. The pandemic caused a 35.5% decrease in passenger traffic, meaning Fort Worth only welcomed 47.4 million passengers in 2020. 

2021 saw positive increases in line with global attitudes – the airport handled 6.1 million passengers. 

Dallas Fort Worth is also the largest hub for airline giant American Airlines, which also happens to be headquartered very near the airport. American’s base at Dallas Fort Worth makes the airport the second-largest single airline hub not only in the U.S but the world, with Delta Air Lines’s hub in Atlanta lurking behind. 

Speaking of Atlanta…

Dallas Fort Worth International Airport
Fort Worth has been rated as a 3-star airport. | © Smiley N. Pool

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport 

The busiest airport in the United States is Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport –  which is often simply shorted to Atlanta Airport or by its code, ATL. 

The airport serves the city of Atlanta, Georgia domestically and internationally and is named after former Atlanta mayors William B. Hartsfield and Maynard Jackson. (Fancy a quick history lesson? Give their names a quick Google!)

Hartsfield-Jackson sees some serious passenger traffic. Since 1998, the Atlanta airport has been the world’s busiest airport by passenger traffic. Only the pandemic in 2020 caused the airport to briefly lose its title, but it was back to business as usual in no time as the airport regained that title in 2021. 

Atlanta Airport saw a whopping 110.5 million passengers in 2019 and 42.9 million in 2020. Recovering to receive 75.7 million passengers in 2021 was an impressive 76% increase from the previous pandemic-ridden year but still nearly 32% down from 2019. 

Hartsfield-Jackson handles just over 1000 flights a day to a total of 225 domestic and international destinations. 

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport
Have you flown from Hartsfield-Jackson before? | © Wikipedia

There you have it! Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport is the busiest airport in the United States – and deservingly so, look at those stats!

What did you make of this top 3? Have you travelled through either airport? Let us know in the comments below. 

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