A record 863,523 total revenue passengers traveled through the Eugene Airport in 2013. That reflects a 6.68% increase over 2012 which was the previous record year.
This is the third record passenger year in a row for the Eugene Airport. In 2011, EUG experienced a 6% increase in total revenue passengers (780,311), followed by a 3.7% increase in 2012 (809,457). EUG also experienced eight record travel months in 2013 including March, April, May, June, July, September, October and December.
“Increased passenger support had a direct effect on our ability to gain two new airlines,” said Eugene Airport Director Tim Doll, A.A.E. “Over the past few years we’ve gained back a significant number of local passengers who have made the choice to support their regional airport and it has made a huge difference.”
The Eugene Airport saw two new airlines added in 2013. Frontier Airlines began service to Denver in May and American Airlines began service to Los Angeles in June. EUG is now served by six airlines, the most ever, with 10 nonstop routes including Portland, Seattle, San Francisco, Oakland, Los Angeles, Denver, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Phoenix-Mesa and Honolulu.
The Eugene Air Service Community Partnership includes the Eugene Area Chamber of Commerce, Springfield Chamber of Commerce, Travel Lane County, and the Lane Metro Partnership. These community partners have served a critical role in retaining and expanding air service at EUG.
“Our Chamber is solidly behind the work that has been done to strengthen air service at the Eugene Airport,” said Eugene Area Chamber of Commerce President Dave Hauser. “Local air service plays a pivotal role in bolstering our economy, in the creation and retention of jobs, and in attracting world class events to our region.”
Factors contributing to the record year include:
• Business travel increasing with an improving local economy.
• Increased flight options with two new airlines serving EUG.
• More passengers utilizing their local airport.
• The Oregon Ducks appearance in the Alamo Bowl and the Oregon State Beavers appearance in the Hawaii Bowl, which included team, band, and booster charter flights.
“Our airport staff has worked steadily to court and land additional air carriers to meet the changing needs of our community, businesses and travelers with a wider set of destinations, more competitive fares and greater connectivity,” said John Tamulonis, chair of the Eugene Airport Advisory Committee. “Our airport has been a leader in growing passengers when other airports of similar size have struggled.”
To accommodate the sustained increase in passengers, several renovation and expansion projects are planned over the next few years. The $5.3 million terminal lobby remodeling project is wrapping up, with the baggage screening machines currently located in the lobby, slated to be moved in February.
Next up are projects that will reconfigure and expand the passenger screening checkpoint, add automated exit lane technology and replace the current single bag claim carousel with two new carousels. These projects are in the planning stage and are expected to be built out over the next two years.