Ontario International Airport began 2021 with double-digit gain in cargo volume while pandemic continued to depress passenger numbers

Ontario International Airport (ONT) began 2021 just as it closed out 2020, with a double-digit increase in commercial freight volume while the COVID-19 pandemic continued to depress passenger numbers. 

January freight volume totaled more than 70,500 tons, a 15.6% increase compared to the same month last year and extending a trend of robust cargo shipments as Southern Californians continued to rely heavily on e-commerce to keep their households and businesses supplied. At the same time, shipments of mail more than doubled year-over-year to 3,225 tons. 

“Cargo continued to be a source of strength in January like it was for all of 2020,” said Mark Thorpe, chief executive officer of the Ontario International Airport Authority. “Freight shippers continued to show great confidence in our ability to provide the infrastructure and facilities they needed to meet increasing demands on the e-commerce supply chain.”

January’s cargo volume continued a trend of double-digit growth at ONT, a leading North American carbo hub which saw freight tonnage increase by 10% or more in 10 different months last year.

In November, FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. completed a $100 million investment in its ONT facilities, the centerpiece of which is a 251,000 square-foot complex with a sorting facility capable of handling 12,000 packages per hour, nine wide-body aircraft gates, 14 feeder aircraft gates and 18 truck docks. 

Air cargo
(tonnage) 
January
2021
January
2020 
Change
 
Freight 70,547 61,027 15.60%
Mail 3,225 1,587 103.23%
Total 73,772 62,614 17.82%

Meanwhile, passenger volume continued to be impacted by the pandemic as nearly 152,000 air travelers moved through ONT in January, 66% less than January 2020. More than 145,000 were domestic passengers and 6,475 were international fliers, decreases of 65% and 79%, respectively.

Thorpe expressed a note of optimism for higher passenger traffic this year, pointing out that airlines operating at ONT have announced plans to restart or initiate new flights to nine U.S. destinations by May while Colombia-based Avianca Airlines will begin service to El Salvador this summer. The Avianca route will be the first to Central America from the Inland Empire.

Passenger
Totals
January
2021
January
2020
Change
Domestic 145,385 423,643 -65.68%
International 6,475 30,896 -79.04%
Total 151,860 454,539 -66.59%

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About Ontario International Airport 
Ontario International Airport (ONT) is the fastest growing airport in the United States, according to Global Traveler, a leading publication for frequent fliers. Located in the Inland Empire, ONT is approximately 35 miles east of downtown Los Angeles in the center of Southern California. It is a full-service airport which, before the coronavirus pandemic, offered nonstop commercial jet service to 26 major airports in the U.S., Mexico and Taiwan. More information is available at www.flyOntario.com. Follow @flyONT on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

About the Ontario International Airport Authority (OIAA)
The OIAA was formed in August 2012 by a Joint Powers Agreement between the City of Ontario and the County of San Bernardino to provide overall direction for the management, operations, development and marketing of ONT for the benefit of the Southern California economy and the residents of the airport's four-county catchment area. OIAA Commissioners are Ontario Mayor Pro Tem Alan D. Wapner (President), Retired Riverside Mayor Ronald O. Loveridge (Vice President), Ontario City Council Member Jim W. Bowman (Secretary), San Bernardino County Supervisor Curt Hagman (Commissioner) and retired business executive Julia Gouw (Commissioner).