Quad City International Airport passenger traffic continues to stabilize
September 23, 2020
August passenger numbers show traffic is stabilizing at the Quad City International Airport (MLI) as the summer travel season comes to a close. The airport remained at a 66% decline year over year (up from 95% in April), even as passenger numbers slightly dip and airlines operate reduced schedules.
“The back-to-school season tends to be one of the slowest times of the year,” said Benjamin Leischner, A.A.E., executive director. “We’ve been working with Campbell-Hill, an outstanding air service development consultant, to make sure we are on top of what’s happening not only at MLI but across the nation and determining how we can work collaboratively with airlines to recover.”
As airlines continue to evaluate route structures during this tumultuous time, two of the airlines serving MLI saw growth of their market share year over year during the summer. American Airlines now holds 45% of the market compared to 28% in August 2019. Allegiant also gained 4 percentage points in August 2020 over August 2019.
“Airlines have been offering low fares and flexible cancellation policies that appealed to leisure and family travelers over the summer,” said Leischner. “Meanwhile, business travel continues to be slow to recover, with many organizations still encouraging or requiring employees to work from home and avoid non-essential travel.”
The Quad City International Airport recently conducted a passenger survey with results giving the airport high marks for cleanliness and safety. The airport’s smaller size and fewer passengers allows for better opportunities to social distance. Free face coverings are available at all entrances and since June, more than 5,000 have been distributed.
Quad City International Airport currently serves Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Las Vegas, Phoenix-Mesa, Orlando/Sanford and St. Pete/Clearwater. As a result of COVID-19, service to Denver, Detroit and Minneapolis has been temporarily suspended. Airport leaders will continue communicating with airlines and share information on the restoration of those routes as it become available. Service to Punta Gorda with Allegiant Air is expected to resume in December.