Haneda jumps to No. 4 busiest airport in the world

Haneda Aiport lobby area.

Tokyo International Airport has reclaimed its number four ranking among busiest airports in the world.

Better known as Haneda, the airport had held the position in 2008, before slipping to fifth place several years ago as China’s Beijing Capital International Airport roared ahead to claim the busiest airport in Asia title.  Introduction of international and regional flights over the past 18 months, as a new runway was brought on line, increased the airline traffic.

Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport is the world’s busiest with 95.46 million passengers, followed by Beijing with 81.93 million.  The Airport Council International, an organization of global airport operators, says Britain’s London Heathrow Airport was third-busiest at 70.04 million passengers.  Haneda served 66.8 million, trumping Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport’s 66.63 million.

No other Japanese airport was even close.  Narita International Airport, the nation’s primary gateway, served 32.79 million passengers.  Haneda began international flights in 2010, but some 90% of its traffic is domestic.  Flights to Sapporo from Haneda are one of the most heavily served air routes in the world.

Haneda flight slots are slated to expand by 20,000 by this weekend, increasing to 410,000.  Next year it’s projected to be 477,000 flights in and out of Haneda.