The Busiest Airport In The World Is Located In?
It would be easy to assume that the busiest airport in the world would be one of the more glamorous and culturally referenced airports like John F. Kennedy Airport in New York City or London Heathrow Airport in London, but the busiest airport in the world is actually located in Atlanta, Georgia.
Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport is, passenger-for-passenger, the busiest airport in the world by a wide margin and has been since 1998. The busy Atlanta hub moves more people than any other airport by millions. In a slow year, a few million more people fly out of Atlanta than anywhere else on earth, but in a typical year the margin rises to above ten million. In 2013, for example, Atlanta International Airport outpaced the runner up, Beijing Capital International Airport, by eleven million passengers and the next runner up, Heathrow Airport, by twenty-two million passengers.
The enormous volume of air traffic from the Atlanta airport can be attributed to the sheer size of the airport (almost seven million square feet of concourse and terminal space) spread out over seven parallel concourse buildings, servicing dozens of airlines and serving as a hub for several major carriers (including serving as the main hub of Delta airlines).
Direct flights from the airport reach all of North America, all of Central America, most of South America, most of Western Europe, parts of Africa, South Korea, Japan, and the United Arab Emirates. In fact, the airport serves up so many direct flights and offers so many connecting flights that there’s an old joke among frequent air travelers: When you die, whether you’re destined for heaven or hell, you’ll get there through Atlanta.
Image courtesy of Craig Butz.