The year ahead promises to be a transformative one for San Francisco International Airport (SFO), the Bay Area’s largest airport and the second-busiest airport in California.
Just before 2016 began, SFO reached a new all-time passenger traffic record of 50 million annual passengers. This milestone capped a six-year period of continuous growth.
At 33%, SFO has experienced the highest rate of passenger enplanement growth from 2007 to 2014 among similar U.S. airports. During that same period, five peer airports experienced a loss in enplanement.
Airport Director John L. Martin said, “The continued growth in passenger traffic at SFO reflects the strength of the San Francisco economy and a highly competitive air fare and air service environment at the Airport.”
Carriers both fresh and familiar have announced new and unprecedented service for travelers flying to and from San Francisco.
United Airlines will be the first airline to offer nonstop service between San Francisco and Singapore, effective June 1, 2016. This will be the only nonstop service to the U.S. from Singapore. United has timed the new flights to connect at SFO with an extensive network of service throughout the U.S., Canada and Latin America.
United will further expand its global reach with service from SFO to Tel Aviv, Israel, beginning March 30, 2016; to Auckland, New Zealand, beginning July 1, 2016; and to Xi’an, China, beginning May 8, 2016.
Another achievement in nonstop service was reached with Air India’s new flight from New Delhi to San Francisco. The only direct flight in operation connecting the two cities, it has received an overwhelming response with a booking of 95% within its initial days of availability.
“This service firmly establishes our Airport as the premier gateway to Asia and the Subcontinent, and provides an unparalleled level of global access to our guests,” said Martin.
Fiji Airways has announced plans to commence seasonal twice-weekly direct service from San Francisco to Nadi starting June 16, 2016. Flight times have been arranged to provide easy connectivity within Fiji, to Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific Island nations.
SFO was also pleased to welcome the return of Qantas Airways’ nonstop service from SFO to Sydney, Australia in December. Qantas will offer six flights per week starting in February.
SFO is also growing its connections in Europe. Airberlin, Germany’s second largest airline, will fly five times from San Francisco to Dusseldorf, beginning May 6, 2016. It will initially feature three flights per week and then increase to five weekly flights starting in June.
Finally, WOW air, the ultra-low-cost transatlantic airline from Iceland, has announced fares from SFO to Iceland starting as low as $99 including taxes. Travelers will have the option to continue their trip to one of WOW air’s 21 European destinations for as little as $199 one-way including taxes. Service will begin out of SFO on June 9, 2016 and will be available five days a week.