Top 10 Busiest Airports in North America

Top 10 Busiest Airports in North America

Home to some of the most popular countries in the world for travel and businesses alike, North America attracts millions of globetrotters from all corners of the planet every single day. So no wonder why this beautiful Western Hemisphere is also called a hub for the busiest airports in the world. 

We bring to you a list of the Top 10 Busiest Airports in North America in this guide so that you can plan your travel in an even better way. Here we go: 

1. Chicago O’Hare Airport (ORD)

Chicago O’Hare Airport Code : ORD (IATA) / KORD (ICAO)

Elevation : 668 ft./ 204 meters

Location : O’Hare, Chicago, Illinois, U.S. 

Hub for : American Airlines/United Airlines 

Renowned as “the busiest square mile in the world”, Chicago O’Hare Airport (ORD) serves over 83 million passengers annually. It held the distinction of the world’s busiest airport between 1963-1998 and is still the world’s 6th busiest airport. 

Chicago O’Hare Airport (ORD) Terminals

This facility features four world-class terminals with 191 gates in total: 

Terminal 1 has 50 gates for two concourses. 

Terminal 2 has 41 gates for two concourses. 

Terminal 3 has 79 gates for four concourses.

Terminal 5 has 21 gates for one concourse.  

Alternative Airports to Chicago O’Hare Airport (ORD)

Chicago Midway International Airport (MDW) : 31 miles

General Mitchell International Airport (MKE) : 73 miles

Austin Straubel International Airport  (GRB) : 197 miles

Fort Wayne International Airport     (FWA) : 198 miles

Major Airlines: 

Aer Lingus

Aeromexico

Air Canada Express

Air Choice One

Air France

Air New Zealand 

Alaska Airlines

Alitalia

Chicago O’Hare Airport (ORD) is named after World War II hero Lt.  Cmdr. Edward H. Butch O’Hare in 1949. It was originally named Orchard Field Airport (ORD) due to its location. 

2. Chicago Midway Airport (MDW)

Chicago Midway Airport Code : MDW (IATA) / KMDW (ICAO)

Elevation : 620 ft./ 189 meters

Location : Clearing & Garfield Ridge, Chicago, Illinois, U.S. 

Hub for : Southwest Airlines 

Chicago Midway Airport (MDW) is one of the busiest airports in North America with passenger traffic of nearly 9 million annually. Named after the Battle of Midway in 1949, this facility is serviced by five state-of-the-art runways. Two of these runways are ILS equipped and are used by air carriers while the other two are used for general aviation. The fifth one is used only for emergency landings by commercial airlines. 

Chicago Midway Airport (MDW) Terminals: 

This facility features a single terminal building with 43 gates and other amenities: 

Concourse A : 19 gates

Concourse B : 26 gates 

Concourse C : 03 gates 

Alternative Airports to Chicago Midway Airport (MDW)

Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD) : 31 miles 

General Mitchell International Airport (MKE) : 98 miles 

Fort Wayne International Airport (FWA) : 178 miles 

Gerald R. Ford International Airport (GRR) : 189 miles 

Indianapolis International Airport (IND) : 194 miles

Major Airlines: 

Allegiant Air 

Delta Air Lines 

Delta Connection 

Porter Airlines 

Southwest Airlines 

Ultimate Air Shuttle 

Volaris 

Chicago Midway Airport (MDW) is a public airport that features luxury lounges, duty-free shops, and airline offices among other basic amenities. 

3. Cancun International Airport (CUN)

Cancun Airport Code : CUN (IATA) / MMUN (ICAO)

Elevation : 20 ft. / 6 meters

Location : Cancún, Quintana Roo, México. 

Hub for : MAYAir  

Cancun International Airport (CUN) is regarded as Latin America’s 3rd busiest airport with passenger traffic of over 12 million annually. This facility is Mexico’s second busiest airport featuring flights to over 20 destinations in 30 countries in Europe, North America, and South America. 

It is equipped with two parallel runways made up of asphalt. 

Cancun International Airport (CUN) Terminals

Cancun International Airport (CUN) has four terminals:

Terminal 1: This facility is equipped with 7 gates and serves charter flights as well as local airlines Magni and VivaAerobus. 

Terminal 2: Equipped with 22 gates, Terminal 2 serves only domestic airlines and some international flights to Central and South America along with long-haul flights to Europe. 

Terminal 3: This facility has 21 gates. It is used primarily by US carriers along with a few Canadian as well as European airlines. Terminal 3 is famous for MERA Business Lounge apart from other amenities. 

Terminal 4: Terminal 4 has 12 gates with a capacity to handle 9 million passengers. This facility serves Aeromexico, Interjet, Air France, Lufthansa, Air Transat, WestJet, Condor, Southwest Airlines, Air Europa, Frontier Airlines, and Sun Country Airlines. 

Alternative Airports to Cancun International Airport (CUN)

Isla Mujeres Airport (ISJ) : 28 KM

Playa del Carmen Airport : 50 KM

Cozumel Airport (CZM) : 57 KM

Merida (Mexico) Airport (MID) : 289 KM

Major Airlines:

Aerolineas Argentinas

Aeromexico

Aeromexico Connect 

Air Canada 

Air Canada Rouge

Air Caraibes

Air Europa

Air France

Air Transat

Alaska Airlines

American Airlines 

The second busiest point of entry to Mexico, Cancun International Airport (CUN) features luxury lounges, ATMs, and other facilities to make passengers’ travel unforgettable. 

4. Bradley International Airport (BDL)

Bradley International Airport Code : BDL(IATA) / KBDL (ICAO)

Elevation : 173 ft. / 53 meters

Location : Windsor Locks, Connecticut. 

Hub for : Connecticut Air National Guard, 

103d Airlift Wing 

Located in the heart of Connecticut, Bradley International Airport (BDL) is New England’s second-largest airport and Connecticut’s busiest with passenger traffic of over 6 million annually. 

The Gateway to New England is also home to America’s most popular aerospace museum New England Air Museum. 

Bradley International Airport (BDL) Terminals

Bradley International Airport (BDL) features a single terminal building that is divided into two concourses at the terminal: East Concourse and West Concourse. 

East Concourse is home to Aer Lingus, Air Canada, Delta, JetBlue, and Southwest while West Concourse houses American, Spirit, United, and Frontier. 

Alternative Airports to Bradley International Airport (BDL)

Boston Logan International Airport (BOS) : 110 km

LaGuardia Airport (LGA) : 121 km

John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) : 128 km

Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) : 143 km

Major Airlines:

Air Canada Express 

American Airlines 

American Eagle 

Delta Air Lines

Delta Connection

Frontier Airlines 

JetBlue

Southwest Airlines 

Spirit Airlines 

Sun Country Airlines 

United Airlines 

United Express

Bradley International Airport (BDL) is the 55th busiest commercial airport in the United States. 

5. Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT)

Charlotte International Airport Code : CLT (IATA) / KCLT (ICAO)

Elevation : 748 ft. / 228 meters

Location : 5501 Josh Birmingham Parkway Charlotte, North Carolina, US. 

Hub for : American Airlines 

Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT) is the recipient of the prestigious “Best Airport” Eagle Award from the International Air Transport Association (IATA). This facility is also regarded as the United State’s 11th busiest airport by passenger traffic and 5th busiest by aircraft movements. 

Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT) Terminal

Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT) features one terminal with 115 gates and five concourses: 

Concourse A : 21 gates

Concourse B : 16 gates

Concourse C : 18 gates

Concourse D : 13 gates

Concourse E : 46 gates

Alternative Airports to Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT)

Concord Regional Airport (USA) : 27 km 

Winston-Salem Airport (INT) : 120 km 

Greenville-Spartanburg Airport (GSP) : 122 km

Greensboro/High Point Airport : 132 km

Columbia Metropolitan Airport   (CAE) : 143 km 

Major Airlines:

Air Canada Express

American Airlines 

American Eagle 

Contour Airlines 

Delta Air Lines 

Delta Connection

Frontier Airlines 

JetBlue 

Lufthansa

Southwest Airlines 

Spirit Airlines 

Ultimate Air Shuttle 

United Airlines 

United Express 

Volaris 

6. Albuquerque International Airport (ABQ)

Albuquerque International Airport Code :  ABQ (IATA) / KABQ (ICAO)

Elevation : 5,335 ft. / 1,632 meters

Location : 2200 Sunport Boulevard SE, Albuquerque, New Mexico. 

Hub for : Cargo Airlines, Ameriflight

With a capacity to handle  over 5 million passengers, Albuquerque International Airport (ABQ) is North America’s one of busiest airports. This facility is also referred to as Albuquerque International Sunport (ABQ) colloquially. 

Albuquerque International Sunport (ABQ) Terminal 

Albuquerque International Sunport (ABQ) is serviced by a single terminal building with 25 gates. It features luxury lounges, restaurants, and duty-free shops among other important amenities for passengers and the general public alike. 

Alternative Airports to Albuquerque International Sunport (ABQ) Terminal 

Santa Fe Municipal Airport (SAF) : 56 miles

Los Alamos County Airport (LAM) : 84 miles

Four Corners Regional Airport (FMN) :184 miles

Major Airlines 

Advanced Air

Alaska Airlines

Allegiant Air

American Airlines 

Albuquerque International Airport (ABQ) is equipped with three concrete runways. 

7. Calgary International Airport (YYC)

Calgary Airport Code :  YYC (IATA) / KABQ (ICAO)

Elevation : 3,606 ft. / 1,099 meters

Hub for : Air Canada, WestJet

Calgary International Airport (YYC) is regarded as one of the busiest airports in Canada with passenger traffic of over 17 million. Due to  its proximity to the region’s petroleum and tourism industries and the oldest national park of the country–Banff  National Park–this airport is regarded as a hub of economic development.  

Calgary International Airport (YYC) Terminals

Calgary International Airport (YYC) features two terminals both domestic as well as international operations. 

Domestic Terminal 

There are four levels and three concourses at the Domestic Terminal.

International Terminal 

There are five levels at this facility which serve different purposes. 

Alternative Airports to Calgary International Airport (YYC) 

Lethbridge County Airport (YQL) : 182.32 km

Cranbrook/Canadian Rockies International Airport (YXC) : 200.28 km 

Edmonton International Airport (YEG) :253.59 km

Medicine Hat Airport (YXH) :   263.93 km 

Castlegar/West Kootenay Regional Airport (YCG) : 319.03 km 

Major Airlines: 

Air Canada 

Air Canada Express 

Air Canada Rouge

Air North

Alaska Airlines 

American Eagle 

Condor

Delta Airlines 

Delta Connection 

Edelweiss Air 

Flair Airlines 

Frontier Airlines 

KLM

Northern Air 

United Airlines 

United Express

8. Cincinnati Northern Kentucky International Airport (CYG)

Cincinnati Northern Kentucky International Airport Code:  CYG(IATA) / KCG(ICAO)

Elevation : 896 ft. / 273 meters

Hub for : Amazon Air, DHL Aviation

Location : 2939 Terminal Drive, Hebron  Kentucky, U.S. 

Nestled in the heart of Kentucky, Cincinnati Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) serves nearly 4 million passengers every year. Regarded as one of the busiest airports in North America, this facility is a unique tableau of cultural potpourri and economic development. 

Cincinnati Northern Kentucky International Airport (CYG) offers services to more than 50 destinations in North America and Europe. It got its code CVD from Covington city in the state, which was the nearest to the airport when it started operations in 1947.

Cincinnati Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) Terminal

Cincinnati Northern Kentucky International Airport (CYG) is  serviced by a single terminal with two concourses on islands. 

Concourse A : 22 gates

Concourse B : 28 gates 

Alternative Airports to Cincinnati Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG)

James M Cox Dayton International Airport (DAY)  : 52. 7 miles

Blue Grass Airport (LEX)   : 78.18 miles 

Rickenbacker International Airport (LCK)   : 93.14 miles 

Louisville International Stanford Field (SDF)   : 97.04 miles 

Major Airlines:

Air Canada Express 

Alaska Airlines 

Allegiant Air 

American Airlines 

American Eagle 

Delta Air Lines 

Delta Connection 

Frontier Airlines 

Southwest Airlines 

Sun Country Airlines 

United Airlines 

United Express 

9. Cleveland Hopkins International Airport (CLE)

Cleveland Hopkins International Airport Code :  CLE (IATA) / KCLE (ICAO)

Location : Cleveland Ohio, US. 

Regarded as a hub for Ohio’s economic development, Cleveland Hopkins International Airport (CLE) is one of the busiest airports serving over 4 million passengers annually along with 119,268 aircraft operations. However, what makes this facility even more important is its ability to shape the region’s business ecosystem with its supply agreements, professional service contracts, and construction projects. 

Cleveland Hopkins International Airport (CLE) Terminal

Cleveland Hopkins International Airport (CLE) features a single terminal that consists of two-levels with four concourses:

  • Concourse A is used for International arrivals of Allegiant Air, Frontier, and Spirit. It has Federal Inspection Services (FIS) customs and border protection facilities. 
  • Concourse B was built in 1954. It houses Delta and Southwest. 
  • Concourse C is home to Air Canada Express, American, JetBlue, and United. 
  • Concourse D is out of operations. United used this facility extensively for its operations until 2014 when it closed its gates and shifted all operations to Concourse C. 

Alternative Airports to Cleveland Hopkins International Airport (CLE) 

Akron Canton Regional (CAK) : 40 miles 

Youngstown-Warren Regional (YNG) : 61 miles 

Detroit Metropolitan Airport (DTW) : 96 miles 

Erie International Airport (ERI) : 97 miles 

Toledo Express (TOL) : 102 miles 

Major Airlines: 

Air Canada Express 

Allegiant Air 

American Airlines 

American Eagle 

Delta Air Lines 

Delta Connection 

Frontier Airlines

JetBlue 

Southwest Airlines 

Spirit Airlines United Airlines 

United Express

10. Baltimore Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI)

Baltimore Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport Code :  BWI (IATA) / KBWI (ICAO)

Elevation : 143 ft. / 44 meters

Location : Anne Arundel County, Maryland, U.S. 

Also known as BWI Marshall, Baltimore Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI) is the busiest airport in Maryland with passenger traffic of over 11 million every year. This facility handles 178,834 aircraft operations annually. 

Baltimore Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI) Terminals

There are five concourses at the terminal with 77 gates: 

Concourse A/B has 30 gates.

Concourse C has 14 gates.

Concourse D has 23 gates.

Concourse E has 10 gates.

Alternative Airports to Baltimore Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI) 

  • Tipton AAF Airport (FME) –  7.96 Miles
  • Lee Airport   (ANP) –  17.47 Miles
  • College Park Airport (CGS) –  19.36 Miles
  • Weide AAF Airport (EDG) –  24.85 Miles
  • Montgomery County Airport (GAI)         –  26.43  Miles

Major Airlines: 

Air Canada Express

Alaska Airlines 

Allegiant Airlines 

American Airlines 

American Eagle 

Boutique Air

Condor

Contour Airlines 

Delta Connection 

Frontier Airlines 

JetBlue

So that is it! Hope this blog on the Top 10 Busiest Airports in North America will help you plan your travel next time. For more such helpful guides, keep checking this space out regularly.

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