CONTACT: Rich Stinson, O: 210-207-1509
C: 912- 433-2329, Rich.Stinson@sanantonio.gov
Tonya Hope, O: 210-207-1515
C: 210-400-7428 firstname.lastname@example.org
San Antonio (August 27, 2019) – July proved to be a productive month of achievement and activity for the San Antonio International Airport(SAT), with many points of success and community interest from San Antonio International Airport (SAT). July started the fourth year of record-breaking passenger stats, the official kick-off of Phase II of the airport’s Strategic Development Plan and, the beginning of a month’s long information and education campaign regarding the TSA’s new “One-ID” travel requirements.
July Begins Fourth Year of Consecutive Record Breaking Growth
The month of July marked the 37th consecutive month – and beginning of a fourth straight year – of unprecedented record-breaking passenger statistics. Industry reports show that SAT experienced yet another record-setting month in July with 961,838 passengers traveling through SAT. This represents a 3% increase from the same month in 2018 making July 2019 the single busiest month on record. For the year-to-date, SAT has already serviced 300,000 more passengers than this time last year – a 6% increase!
“This is the single-busiest month of growth on record and the excitement builds each month as we wait for the monthly report,” said Russ Handy, Aviation Director for the City of San Antonio. “We eclipsed 10 million annual passengers for the first time ever just six months ago, and to think that we are already 300,000 passengers ahead of last year’s pace is just astounding.”
SAT’s domestic traffic for July increased by 3% with 906,674 passengers, while international traffic saw an increase of 4% with 55,164 passengers. Additionally, a total of 23,071,791 pounds of air cargo moved through SAT during the month of July, an increase of 5% and making it the busiest month of July on record for air cargo.
Of significant interest is that this continued growth comes despite the worldwide grounding of the Boeing Max 737 aircraft, which has resulted in the reduction of air services or temporary suspension of flights at numerous airports throughout the country, including SAT. Not only has SAT avoided setbacks from the aircraft grounding, but a recent retention study has indicated more passengers are choosing to fly in/out of SAT as opposed to alternative airports in the region. The retention study indicates that SAT has experienced a 4-point increase – from 83% to 87% - in passenger retention from 2015.
Phase 2 Kick-Off of the Strategic Development Plan
In order to stay ahead of passenger growth and demand, the San Antonio Airport System launched a Strategic Development Plan to focus on the next 20 years, and examine the suitability for growth and expansion over the next 50 years. The data-driven plan will produce options regarding land-use, facilities, and services required for the airport system to accommodate the growth of air travel in the San Antonio Region.
Phase I began in 2018 and examined whether the existing airport location could accommodate expected long-term growth and expansion needs, effectively answering the expansion question of “will it fit?” The data-driven results of Phase I indicated that the projected 20- and 50-year growth projections could be met in the airport’s current location.
The San Antonio Airport System kicked-off Phase 2 of the Strategic Development Plan by hosting plenary and sketching sessions with its executive and managerial teams. Phase II will examine plans to accommodate demand for a 20-year period by looking at options regarding land use, facilities, and services required for the airport system to accommodate the growth of the San Antonio region. As was the case during Phase I, community engagement will be a vital part of the Phase 2 process and plan, and San Antonio’s SASpeakUp! initiative will host a number of community engagements for the dissemination of information and the collection of feedback from San Antonio residents. Phase II of the Strategic Development Plan is expected to take twelve months for completion.
Transportation Security Administration Issues Advisory
The Transportation Security Administration has begun to inform travelers who present non-compliant state-issued driver’s licenses about the upcoming REAL ID requirement and effective date of enforcement.
Beginning September 30, 2021, each traveler must present a REAL-ID compliant driver’s license, a state-issued enhanced driver’s license, or another acceptable form of identification to fly within the United States. Individuals who are unable to verify their identity will not be permitted to enter the TSA checkpoint and will not be allowed to fly.
Although the requirement and active enforcement does not begin for more than a year, the intent of the verbal advisement is to promote traveler awareness regarding the upcoming change in identification requirements.
SAT will partner with the TSA in maximizing passenger awareness. Social media posts, over-head audio announcements, static / electronic signage and a proactive media engagement plan will help to disseminate information and awareness for all passengers traveling through SAT.
For more information about flying with a REAL ID visit tsa.gov/real-id.