More people are flying out of the Dayton International Airport. But air travel has not recovered from COVID

Airways nonetheless face many challenges, together with pilot shortages, provide chain points and excessive jet gasoline costs, that are stopping airways from reinstating capability misplaced through the pandemic, mentioned Gil Turner, Dayton’s aviation director.

“We’re cautiously optimistic that (the airport’s) passenger site visitors will return to pre-pandemic ranges in time, however this can be a course of,” Turner mentioned. “This isn’t simply an airport effort however it’s a group effort”

Good numbers

By the top of November, the Dayton airport welcomed 570,845 air vacationers — 31,800 extra fliers than throughout the identical interval in 2022 (a 6% enhance), according to the newest data from the aviation facility.

Final month, passenger boardings on the Dayton airport jumped 20%, in comparison with November 2022. That was the biggest year-over-year enhance since early spring of 2022.

The Dayton airport has now seen 5 consecutive months of year-over-year passenger development.

Earlier than this streak, passenger boardings had declined in 10 out of the earlier 12 months year-over-year.

“We’re ecstatic to see our passenger site visitors rising and transferring in the proper path,” Turner mentioned. “Nevertheless, the aviation business continues to be fighting returning to the place it was previous to the pandemic.”

Yr Passengers
(By Oct.)
2022 584,487
2021 538,420
2020 337,517
2019 892,414

Exceed the aim

About 584,440 folks flew out of the Dayton airport final 12 months.

Aviation officers final 12 months set a aim of 605,000 enplanements for 2023, and the ultimate depend ought to simply surpass that quantity.

Turner mentioned he believes that no less than 615,000 folks have flown out of the airport.

Throughout price range discussions in October, aviation officers mentioned they hoped to develop passenger site visitors to about 682,000 enplanements in 2024.

Turner this week mentioned they’re forecasting that enplanements will enhance to no less than 650,000 subsequent 12 months.


COVID clobbered air journey and severely exacerbated already declining passenger volumes on the Dayton airport.

The Dayton airport had 892,415 enplanements in 2019. The following 12 months, when COVID hit, solely 337,515 folks flew out of Dayton (a 62% decline).

Boardings declined for seven straight years between 2012 and 2019. About 1.3 million folks flew out of Dayton in 2012.

Turner mentioned the airport is also working to extend the variety of seats accessible on plane that come out and in of Dayton. Flights out of Dayton had about 715,665 seats final 12 months. The airport’s aim is to have 850,000 seats subsequent 12 months.

Turner mentioned the airport needs extra plane and bigger plane. He mentioned on common about 80% to 85% of the seats within the Dayton market are bought and stuffed.

The Dayton airport is a crucial asset for town and the whole area, mentioned Dayton Metropolis Supervisor Shelley Dickstein.

The town, the Dayton Space Chamber of Commerce and a brand new air service advisor are working intently with the airways and enterprise group to market the airport and entice new service, Dickstein mentioned.

“Whereas the aviation business doesn’t anticipate full restoration from the COVID disruption till near 2025, we’re not sitting round and ready for that,” she mentioned.

Flights out of Dayton hook up with the 12 largest airports within the nation, which suggests vacationers can get to wherever on the earth they wish to go, Dickstein mentioned.

Turner mentioned advertising and marketing the airport is a precedence, as a result of folks have to learn about what native service and flights can be found.

“We repeatedly discuss to all airways, those who at the moment fly from DAY, those who used to fly from DAY, in addition to airways which have by no means flown from DAY,” he mentioned. “We inform them the Dayton story, our development, our strengths, and the place our group must go. We remind them how they are often worthwhile right here within the Birthplace of Aviation.”

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