Industries in Depth

From Atlanta to Beijing, these are the world's busiest airports

Passengers walk across an air bridge as they disembark a flight at Changi Airport in Singapore May 13, 2009. World airline traffic fell 12 percent in March alone as trade and tourism fell amid the global economic downturn.

Airports Council International has released its list of the world's busiest airports. Image: REUTERS/Vivek Prakash

Benjamin Zhang
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The Airports Council International (ACI) recently released its list of the busiest airports in the world. Once again, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) took the top spot, with more than 100 million passengers in 2015. According to the ACI, this represents an increase in traffic of over 5.5% over 2014. The trade group attributes Atlanta's success to its strategic location, where it is within a two-hour flight of 80% of the US population. In addition, the ACI credits the growth of ATL's largest tenant — Delta Air Lines — for the airport's continued expansion. Globally, the number of people traveling by air grew at a rate of 6.1% in 2015.

"It's impressive to witness the dynamic character of the aviation industry and its evolution over time," ACI World Director General Angela Gittens said in a statement. "Even in the most mature markets such as the United States and parts of Western Europe, several of the major hubs experienced year-over-year growth rates in passenger traffic that were well above the historical growth levels for these regions."

The trade group compiled its list using passenger-traffic data from 1,144 airports around the world.

Here are the 16 busiest airports in the world based on total passenger traffic:

No. 16. Singapore Changi Airport (SIN): 55,449,000 passengers in 2015

No. 15. John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK): 56,827,154 passengers in 2015

No. 14. Amsterdam Airport Schiphol (AMS): 58,284,864 passengers in 2015

No. 13. Shanghai Pudong International Airport (PVG): 60,053,387 passengers in 2015

No. 12. Frankfurt Airport (FRA): 61,032,022 passengers in 2015

No. 11. Istanbul Ataturk Airport (IST): 61,836,781 passengers in 2015

No. 10. Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW): 64,072,468 passengers in 2015

No. 9. Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG): 65,766,986 passengers in 2015

No. 8. Hong Kong International Airport (HKG): 68,283,407 passengers in 2015

No. 7. Los Angeles International Airport (LAX): 74,937,004 passengers in 2015

No. 6. Heathrow Airport (LHR): 74,989,795 passengers in 2015

No. 5. Tokyo International Airport (HND): 75,316,718 passengers in 2015

No. 4. Chicago O'Hare International Airport (ORD): 76,949,504 passengers in 2015

No. 3. Dubai International Airport (DXB): 78,010,265 passengers in 2015

No. 2. Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK): 89,938,628 passengers in 2015

No. 1. Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL): 101,491,106 passengers in 2015

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