12.5 million passengers: Record growth for Silicon Valley’s Airport in 2017

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Mineta San José International Airport (SJC) passenger traffic increased 15.6 percent in 2017, marking five consecutive years of solid passenger growth. SJC ended the calendar year with serving 12,480,232 million departing and arriving passengers, a record-setting increase of 1.7 million more customers choosing SJC for their travel plans over the previous year.

2017 Flight Review

The 1.7 million passengers added year-over-year is because Silicon Valley business and leisure travelers had more choices with new and expanded nonstop service in 2017. These included:

Two new airlines: Aeromexico and Frontier

Five new routes: Morelia and Zacatecas in Mexico, Newark (on two airlines), Tucson and Long Beach

Newly competitive routes: Guadalajara, Chicago-O’Hare, Newark, Burbank,
Reno and Austin

“With incredible double-digit growth and the addition of two new airlines and five new routes in 2017, SJC remains the fastest-growing airport in the nation,” said San José Mayor Sam Liccardo. “I’d like to thank our 16 airlines for their confidence and continued investments, as well as our dedicated airport staff and Silicon Valley business partners for working together to bring more choices to the millions of travelers who fly through Silicon Valley’s Airport.”

SJC’s tremendous growth is the result of a public-private partnership of community leaders focused on offering Silicon Valley residents, businesses and visitors a convenient, efficient and passenger-friendly experience on the airlines and to the nonstop destinations that are important to their lives and livelihoods.

The Silicon Valley Leadership Group, the Silicon Valley Organization, Joint Venture Silicon Valley, the Global Travel Association – Silicon Valley Chapter and Team San Jose, along with numerous other partners, have worked in tandem with City and Airport leadership to attract the air service in demand by those who live, work and play in the South Bay region.

“Airport staff is proud of the record passenger growth we achieved in 2017, and the positive travel experience we, along with our airlines and so many other partners, continue to offer to our community,” said Director of Aviation John Aitken. “Since 2014, SJC has launched seven new airlines and 25 new or announced nonstop routes.

“This success reinforces that Silicon Valley travelers are choosing SJC as we are enhancing their quality of life, and keeps the Airport team focused on offering new ways to enhance our passengers’ travel experience,” Aitken added. “This growth has contributed to hundreds of millions of dollars in local economic impact, and has created new jobs at the Airport and within our community.”

2018 Flight Preview

The passenger growth trend will continue through fall 2018, with 16 new or newly competitive routes for Silicon Valley travelers and visitors alike. These are:

– Southwest – launching a major Silicon Valley expansion in spring with 80 additional weekly flights, including eight new nonstop destinations, six of which were previously unserved at SJC by any airline.

o Cabo San Lucas – first-ever international service for Southwest in San Jose o New Orleans and Albuquerque – weekly flights begin April 8 o Saint Louis, Houston-Hobby, Spokane and Boise – daily service launches on April 8

o Orlando – daily service begins May 6

– Frontier to Atlanta, Austin, Cincinnati, Colorado Springs and San Antonio – three- or four-weekly flights start on April 8 or 9.

– Aeromexico to Mexico City – daily, seasonal service operates June 1 through August 31.

– Delta to New York-JFK – daily flights begin June 8.

– Alaska to Everett/Seattle area – daily service is expected to begin in the fall, pending government approval.

2017 Passenger Service Upgrades

In 2017, SJC invested in these passenger enhancements, which contributed to the record-setting traveler numbers:

– Added three new gates: 29 and 30, to enhance airline flight scheduling, and 7a, ground-level boarding with bus support;

– In the International Arrivals Building:

o $8.2 million expansion and renovation, with an expanded bag claim area and enclosed greeter waiting area
o The Mobile Passport Control app;

– Modernized the Terminal A Ground Transportation Center;

– Placed a new monument sign with a digital feature at Coleman Avenue and Airport Boulevard (one of three SJC gateways);

– Enhanced food, beverage and retail concessions offerings.