YLW exceeds two million passengers for second consecutive year

Jan 15, 2020

Photo: YLW

Kelowna International Airport (YLW) has released its final passenger numbers for 2019, with figures showing airport travel surpassing two million passengers, securing tenth busiest airport in Canada for a second year in a row. In 2019, passengers totalled 2,032,144, a 1.3 per cent decrease or 26,886 fewer passengers than in 2018.

YLW experienced unprecedented passenger growth from 2016-2018, mainly driven by expanded air service and flight connectivity, population growth, and economic activity in the region. To help meet the needs of the growing region, YLW announced in December the next phase of its capital development program Soaring Beyond 2.5 Million Passengers.

“Exceeding two million passengers again this year is an incredible accomplishment for YLW,” said Sam Samaddar, Airport Director. “We need to consider the future growth of YLW and our plan to expand the airport starting in spring 2020 is just one way we are working to meet the needs of the region now, and many years into the future.”

As part of the overall development, YLW will complete the following projects:

  • Expand the terminal by doubling the size of the existing departures area and expanding security screening
  • Design an apron expansion to accommodate larger and a greater number of aircraft
  • Design upgrades to airside lighting and supporting infrastructure
  • Purchase essential airside equipment, including equipment to clear snow from the apron, taxiways and runway

Over the next 10 years, YLW anticipates a total investment of $293 million to expand and upgrade airport facilities, infrastructure and equipment. This investment has no impact on tax dollars as it is funded through airport revenues and improvement fees.

Quick Facts:

  • March was YLW’s busiest month in 2019 with 193,715 passengers travelling through the airport.
  • In 2019, YLW welcomed a new airline –Swoop, launching flights to Las Vegas and Winnipeg.
  • By 2045, YLW is expected to serve 3.5 million passengers annually.

As the 10th busiest airport in Canada, YLW’s total economic impact is 4,545 jobs and $789 million in total economic output to the province of British Columbia. Serving over 2 million passengers in 2019, YLW offers more than 70 daily non-stop commercial flights with nine airline partners. For more information, visit ylw.kelowna.ca.

(News Source: YLW Press Release)