More travelers used SLO County airport in 2022 than ever before: ‘An incredible achievement’

Joe Johnston/jjohnston@thetribunenews.com

The San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport saw a record-breaking number of passengers in 2022, airport administration announced Monday.

According to a news release, 553,425 passengers traveled through the San Luis Obispo airport in 2022 — the most annual passengers in the airport’s history.

That was also more than 36% higher than the traveler count in 2021, when 406,230 people flew in or out of SLO.

Prior to 2022, the busiest year at the airport was 2019, when 544,755 passengers used the facility, the release said.

The San Luis Obispo airport was hit hard in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic with fewer people traveling due to lockdowns and strict testing regulations. As regulations eased, travelers went back to flying in droves.

American Airlines even started using larger airplanes in October 2022 for its twice-daily flights between SLO County and Dallas-Fort Worth.

“This is an incredible achievement that I am so grateful to be a part of, especially after the pandemic impacted the entire travel industry,” Courtney Johnson, director of airports for San Luis Obispo County, said in the release. “This milestone would not be possible without the dedication and commitment of the (airport) team, who always puts the passenger experience at the forefront of everything we do.

“I know I speak for all of us when I say we greatly appreciate each and every person who chooses to fly out of our airport.”

What airlines flew the most passengers through SLO?

According to the release, American Airlines was the largest carrier flying out of the San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport in 2022.

That airline, which operates daily plane flights to Dallas-Forth Worth and Phoenix, recorded 215,761 passengers throughout the year.

United Airlines — which flies to Denver, Los Angeles and San Francisco — carried 209,417 passengers in 2022, according to the release.

Alaska Airlines flew 128,247 passengers on its flights to Portland, San Diego and Seattle.

For more SLO airport statistics, go to sloairport.com/airport-statistics.