This unlikely US airport just became the world’s busiest

May 2, 2020

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There have been many instances during this coronavirus pandemic where I’ve found myself questioning, “Is this real life?”

The whole situation feels so surreal. If you would’ve told me that I’d be stuck at home and not able to travel for the foreseeable future, I would’ve thought you were kidding.

Well folks, here we are — nearly two months into being stuck at home. With the world at a halt, we’ve witnessed a lot of interesting things. Adding to that list is Anchorage Airport (ANC) becoming the “busiest airport in the world” as of Saturday, April 25.

On a typical day, busy hubs like Atlanta (ATL), Los Angeles (LAX), Dubai (DXB) and Beijing (PEK) hold some of the top spots, whereas Anchorage (ANC) is usually toward the end of the list. However, coronavirus has changed that completely.

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To put it into perspective, on Saturday, April 25, Anchorage (ANC) had 948 airport arrivals and departures, whereas London (LHR) had just 682 arrivals and departures, according to FlightRadar data.

So how did Anchorage (ANC) become the world’s busiest airport in the midst of coronavirus? Cargo operations, something the Alaskan airport is no stranger to. In fact, Anchorage usually tops the charts as the fifth busiest cargo airport in the world and second busiest cargo airport in the U.S. thanks to Alaska’s close proximity to Asia compared to other North American cities.

Related: What will US airline maps look like after coronavirus?

So while we’ve seen significant decreases in passenger flights overall with airlines being forced to slash routes — and in some cases, reconfigure routes altogether — cargo flights haven’t been impacted quite as dramatically. Hence, why we’ve seen many commercial carriers start to carry cargo.

So here’s to the world’s new busiest airport!

Featured photo by chaolik/Getty Images.

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