CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Business is booming for Corpus Christi International Airport, as director of aviation reports more than 60,000 travelers came through CCIA in June. Thirty-one thousand of them were flying out of Corpus Christi.
Those numbers helped the airport set some records.
“We set several records in June," Kevin Smith said, Corpus Christi Director of Aviation. "We were really excited. We had the most transactions in our parking lot since the airport opened. Really, really busy month for June. All of the airlines were running 90 percent load factors which is also a record for all three airlines to hit 90 percent in one month.”
After the COVID-19 vaccine became widely available and travel restrictions were loosened, citizens nationwide got an itch for travel after hunkering down for over a year.
“I think people are ready to travel again, you know," Smith said." And we’ve really been promoting Corpus Christi as a destination, us along with Visit Corpus Christi. We’ve been really getting the message out. There’s tons of stuff to do here. There’s 70 miles of drivable beach. A lot of people don’t know there’s even a beach in Corpus Christi. When we get out and talk to these airlines and some of their employees, they’re just blown away with what Corpus Christi has to offer.”
CCIA says they are just six percent shy of the pre-COVID-19 levels experienced in June of 2019; raising the eyebrows of the airlines that serve the airport, as CCIA's recovery is outpacing the national average. One major signifier is that flights are arriving and departing with very few or no empty seats.
Smith sad CCIA is outpacing almost all Texas airports besides Austin. Last month CCIA was down 5 percent in revenue where Austin was down 3 percent.
“We are glad to be on the radar of airlines for all the right reasons...we can’t say enough about the loyalty that members of our community are showing as they choose to fly CCIA,” said Smith.
He added that for the first time in his time in Corpus Christi, airlines are approaching him. Talks are underway for the possibility to have two new airlines begin business at CCIA.
More information about that will be known this fall.
If you plan on flying out of CCIA soon, remember that masks are still required inside the terminal and on aircraft, as per a federal order. Travelers who haven’t flown in a while are encouraged to brush up on TSA rules before traveling.