General Mitchell International Airport Passenger Count Up In February

 MILWAUKEE, Wis. – April 14, 2014 – Milwaukee County’s General Mitchell International Airport (MKE) is reporting passenger numbers for January and February 2014.  February traffic rose 1.1 percent, while January was down 1.5%.  This follows a 3.5 percent increase in December 2013.

January’s decrease was largely due to extreme winter weather in the eastern and southern portions of the U.S., grounding an unprecedented 49,000 flights and delaying 300,000 others.  In all, 30 million airline passengers were affected by delayed or canceled flights in the U.S. in January.

“The airline industry is cyclical.  After reaching record highs in 2009 and 2010, industry consolidation resulted in fewer flights, but we are starting to see passenger traffic trend higher once again,” County Executive Chris Abele said.  “Mitchell Airport’s low fares continue to draw travelers from throughout Wisconsin and northern Illinois.”

For more than six years running, MKE remains the region’s low-fare leader.  MKE’s average airfare is $50 less than O’Hare’s and $28 less than the nation’s average.

“We have nonstops to 36 destinations across North America, and Southwest Airlines is our largest carrier.  Unlike O’Hare, we have all the major domestic airlines,” Airport Director Barry Bateman added.  MKE is also served by AirTran, Delta, United, American/US Airways, Frontier, and Air Canada.

General Mitchell International Airport is owned by Milwaukee County and operated by the Department of Transportation, Airport Division, under the policy direction of the Milwaukee County Executive and the County Board of Supervisors. The airport is entirely funded by user fees; no property tax dollars are used for the airport’s capital improvements or for its day-to-day operation.