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February 2020 U.S. Airline Traffic Data (Preliminary)

U.S. airlines carried 6.7% more scheduled service passengers in February 2020 than in February 2019, according to preliminary data filed with the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) by the 25 airlines that carry the most passengers.

The 25 airlines carry 99% of the total passengers traveling on U.S. airlines.

February 2020 passenger numbers for 25 carriers with the most passengers:

  • Total: 67.6 million passengers in February 2020, up 6.7% from February 2019 (63.3M)
  • Domestic: 59.6 million passengers in February 2020, up 7.5% from February 2019 (55.5M)
  • International: 7.91 million passengers in February 2020, up 1.0% from February 2019 (7.84M)

U.S. airline traffic reports are filed monthly with BTS. Final February data will be released on May 14.  Complete international data by origin and destination will be released on Aug. 13.

President Trump issued an order on Jan. 31 restricting travel to the U.S. from China.  He issued an additional order on March 11 restricting travel to the U.S. from certain European countries.

Systemwide Passengers

February 2020 would be the 29th consecutive month of increases in U.S. airlines passengers from the same month of the previous year dating back to October 2017. During those 29 months, only the 8.8% increase from December 2018 to December 2019 was a larger year-to-year increase than the 6.7% rise from February 2019 to February 2020.

Table 1: Systemwide Percent Change in US Airlines Passengers from the Same Month of the Previous Year 2016-2020, February 2020 Year-to-Year Percent Change

2016-2017 2017-2018 2018-2019 2019-2020
January 3.0 2.9 4.0 5.6
February* -0.2 5.7 3.0 6.7
March 3.4 4.6 5.1
April 4.5 4.8 3.8
May 3.0 4.9 5.2
June 3.4 5.0 3.7
July 3.8 5.2 3.6
August 5.0 5.0 3.4
September -2.3 5.8 5.7
October 4.6 3.9 4.1
November 4.6 4.5 0.5
December 3.5 3.6 8.8
Annual 3.1 4.7 4.2

Notes: 

* February 2020 data is preliminary

Source: 

Bureau of Transportation Statistics, T-1

Domestic Passengers

February 2020 would be the 29th consecutive month of increases in U.S. airlines domestic passengers from the same month of the previous year dating back to October 2017. During those 29 months, only the 9.5% increase from December 2018 to December 2019 was a larger year-to-year domestic passenger increase than the 7.5% rise from February 2019 to February 2020.

Table 2: Domestic Percent Change in US Airlines Passengers from the Same Month of the Previous Year 2016-2020, February 2020 Year-to-Year Percent Change

2016-2017 2017-2018 2018-2019 2019-2020
January 3.1 3.2 3.9 6.2
February* -0.1 5.9 3.0 7.5
March 3.8 4.2 5.4
April 3.7 5.7 3.7
May 2.7 5.3 5.2
June 3.1 5.3 3.6
July 3.7 5.8 3.8
August 5.0 5.5 3.4
September -2.5 5.8 5.8
October 4.7 3.8 4.2
November 4.5 4.4 0.2
December 3.7 3.7 9.5
Annual 3.0 4.9 4.3

Notes: 

* February 2020 data is preliminary

Source: 

Bureau of Transportation Statistics, T-1

International Passengers

February 2020 would be the 22nd consecutive month of increases in U.S. airlines international passengers from the same month of the previous year dating back to May 2018. The 1.0% increase in passengers from February 2019 would be the smallest year-to-year increase during those 22 months.

Table 3: International Percent Change in US Airlines Passengers from the Same Month of the Previous Year 2016-2020, February 2020 Year-to-Year Percent Change

2016-2017 2017-2018 2018-2019 2019-2020
January 2.1 1.0 4.5 1.9
February* -1.2 4.6 3.4 1.0
March 0.4 7.2 3.4
April 9.8 -1.0 4.6
May 5.4 2.3 5.6
June 5.3 3.4 4.2
July 4.6 1.6 2.2
August 4.9 2.0 3.9
September -1.1 5.9 4.6
October 3.2 4.3 3.2
November 5.4 4.7 2.2
December 1.7 3.2 3.6
Annual 3.5 3.1 3.8

Export Table DataNotes: 

* February 2020 data is preliminary

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