The president of the Ontario International Airport Authority Board of Commissioners says he saw encouraging signs of recovery in 2021 with strong airline passenger volumes and cargo shipments in a report released on Monday.

Nearly 4.5 million airline passengers traveled through Ontario International Airport in 2021. It was 77% more passengers than 2020 and 80% more passengers than in 2019.

Ontario International Airport had 890,000 tons of air cargo shipments, a decline of 3.7% from 2020 but 14% higher than it was in 2019.

“We saw encouraging signs of recovery in 2021 as demand for air travel neared pre-pandemic levels, and we look forward to welcoming more travelers as public health authorities continue efforts to slow the spread of coronavirus variants and airline passengers resume more normal travel patterns,” said Alan D. Wapner, president of the Ontario International Airport Authority (OIAA) Board of Commissioners.

In December, more than 467,000 passengers passed through Ontario. It was a 145% increase from December 2020 and 90% of the volume in December in 2019.

Wapner said he was bullish about Ontario’s role as a leading hub for e-commerce in 2021.

“Our air freight partners continued to rely on Ontario International as a focal point in the distribution of consumer goods in Southern California,” Wapner said. “Our expansive, modern facilities remain attractive to our tenants and are a great public asset for the region.”

The airport recorded 97,500 tons of freight and mail in December, almost equal to the same month in 2020 and 9.5% higher than December 2019.

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