Apr. 2--The number of passengers passing through Mitchell International Airport rose 34% making it the busiest February ever at the Milwaukee facility.
A total of 668,504 passengers passed through Mitchell in February, 168,479 more than the previous February. The boost is due to more flights being offered as well as the addition of Southwest Airlines to Milwaukee's airport. The facility has also seen a significant increase in the number of travelers from northern Illinois and the Chicago area traveling to Milwaukee to take advantage of lower fares and parking fees.
The increase shows Milwaukee is one of the country's fastest-growing airports. Passenger traffic nationwide dropped 2.9% in February, according to the Air Transport Association.
The average airfare out of Milwaukee was lower than the average at 89 other U.S. airports, according to third quarter 2009 U.S. Department of Transportation statistics, the most recent figures. Mitchell's average airfare was about $81 less than at O'Hare and $60 less than the national average.