September 18, 2019

Newest Upgraded Points Data Study Reveals Fastest Growing U.S. Destinations by Origin Airport

Florida shows significant growth, especially in Orlando and Jacksonville.

Upgraded Points recently revealed its newest study showcasing the most popular flight destinations flown to in the United States. Based on industry data from last year, Upgraded Points analyzed and compiled the information from the busiest airports that serve as origin points, then couched that information into an interactive map and chart for ease of viewing. Upgraded Points is a regular source for such airline data studies, as well as tips and advice for travelers.

The Fastest Growing U.S. Destinations by Origin Airport

"Looking at destination popularity can be quite revealing, especially concerning vacation spots" said Upgraded Points Founder Alex Miller. "Not only does it show us the most exciting vacation locations chosen for any given season or year, it also reveals that a traveler's origin greatly influences where they like to visit. For instance: Seeking a beach to flee the winter, or moving from the plains to the mountains. One thing is certain — travel preferences are not constant. Americans like variation when it comes to their travel habits."

Analysis Methodology

Based on data collected by the U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) concerning the 20 busiest U.S. airports in 2018, Upgraded Points focused on enplaned passengers from origin to destination. The year-over-year calculation is derived from the percentage change in the count of passengers from fourth quarter 2017 to fourth quarter 2018. All routes that counted 500 passengers or higher per quarter were included.

Growth Per Destination

Some destinations explored in the study, including the number of passengers passing through each airport, revealed:

  • Seattle (SEA): Nearly 50 million passengers.
  • Detroit (DTW): Over 35 million passengers.
  • Houston (IAH): Almost 44 million passengers.
  • Boston (BOS): Just over 40 million passengers.
  • San Francisco (SFO): Nearly 58 million passengers.
California ranked high in overall popularity, with 9 of the original 20 origin airports having Golden State airports as part of their top-five fastest growing destinations. Many percentages of growth exceeded 100 percent in just one year. For instance: Passengers traveling from Atlanta (ATL) to Ontario, Canada (ONT) grew 106 percent, while those traveling from Chicago (ORD) to Burbank (BUR) increased by a striking 1,164 percent. And those traveling from Fort Lauderdale (FLL) to San Antonio (SAT) netted a 1,635 percent increase.

Other origin points offered different data. For example, Denver (DEN) saw a 714 percent increase in travelers heading to Cody, Wyoming (COD).

Fastest-Growing Destinations Based on Origin Points

Although multiple airports are experiencing growth in traffic for a variety of reasons, there are a few destinations that stand out. These include:

  1. Richmond, Virginia.
  2. Jacksonville, Florida.
  3. Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
  4. San Antonio, California.

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