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Possible return to normal air travel, says Winnipeg Airports Authority

It’s been a busy summer for the Winnipeg Airports Authority, as data from their latest quarterly report suggests a return to a pre-pandemic level of air travel.

In the last three months alone, the WAA reported over a million travellers flying in and out of Winnipeg Richardson International Airport. It’s the first time the airport has seen such a number since 2019. At this rate, the WAA is forecasting over four million passengers by the end of the year.

In a press release on Aug. 2, the airports authority noted that the Richardson airport marked its busiest day in nearly four years on June 30. More than 15,800 people passed through that Friday, ahead of the July long weekend. Michel Rosset, manager of communications, told Global News that the high passenger volumes are a result of pent-up travel demand.

“We know people want to take off to explore the world or to reconnect with the people and places they love… our mission is centred around connecting communities, so we listened to what the community wants. We talk with our partners at the airlines and other stakeholders, to connect them with the routes that (people) want,” said Rosset. “We always predicted our recovery from the pandemic would take several years. And to see where we are now and how we continue to move forward has been very, very exciting.”

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According to Rosset, the latest data shows that WAA is within 93 per cent of its pre-pandemic numbers. The greatest number of travelers was in 2018, when the airport logged nearly 4.5 million passengers.

In Wednesday’s release, president Nick Hays noted that a busy summer season and higher passenger numbers marked a “significant milestone in our recovery.”

“As we continue to see an ongoing release of pent-up travel demand, the dedication of our resilient team and the unwavering support from our partners have helped us meet the needs of the community,” said Hays.

Click to play video: 'Summer travel season'

Summer travel season

&© 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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