Palm Springs, CA
) continues to reach new heights also. Pax traffic is up 7.2% YTD through May, an increase of 56K to 828,110. Every month this year has set a new record, when comparing like months in previous years. 2005 was a record year, with a total of 1,419,087 passengers. If the current pace of growth is sustained through yearend, as expected, traffic will far surpass 1.5M for 2006!
While the market is still seasonal, local permanent population is swelling by nearly 20,000 annually. It's evident that more locals (or their visitors) are using the airport by the increase in vehicles and revenue from the public parking lot operation.
This summer, seat capacity will be up about 10% over last year, with UA
* offering new SFO
regional jet service. AA
will maintain 2x daily DFW
service, up from the usual 1x daily MD80 trip. US* will continue its daily LAS
trip that began last fall, along with a high amount of capacity to PHX
lost 2x weekly Allegiant service to LAS
in mid-May, but it's already apparent the impact will be nonexistent. In May, airport traffic was up 11.3% over last year, and G4
only accounted for 452 of the 11,557 additional passengers. The enplaned load factor was 82% for all carriers, while G4
was at 40%. Some carriers adjusted schedules up or down for the month, resulting in a small increase in seat capacity of 3%. So demand far outpaced capacity.
Construction of a new Regional Concourse facility is currently underway, to open in late Spring '07. It'll have 8-gates and 15K sq.ft. of enclosed space. All carriers operating regional aircraft, with the exception of CO
* to IAH
, will operate from this facility upon completion. Also, a new and greatly expanded security screening checkpoint began operating in Feb of this year, to ease the backups experienced during peak departure days in winter. And another two lanes can be added when demand requires it.
Next winter season should be rather interesting, as there are several new or expanded service opportunities in the works. If even half of what is being discussed is operated, PSP
should surpass 1.6M passengers in 2007!
The combination of serving a strong tourist destination coupled with a rapidly growing local population base will help the airport's traffic continue to rise...and it's certainly one of the most charming and relaxing airports I've come across in the US. Even with the increased size and use, it will remain that way.
It's a sleeper airport that almost no one seems to notice is growing, and remarkably without the aid of G4
, or WN
. I include G4
because the LAS
service only lasted 5mos. I expect some of those low-cost carriers will play a role in the future of PSP