McAllen International Airport Flying High

by Public Information Office | Feb 18, 2015

Consider 2014 McAllen International Airport’s bump up to 1st class.


McAllen’s airport saw a near record numbers of passengers, double digit growth, claimed half of all passenger boardings in the region, received $10 million for runway safety upgrades and worked toward completing a 55,000-foot $23 million expansion as part of a banner year.


The airport also launched an effort to add more car-rental vendors, expanded its TSA area, improved the baggage handling system, and announced that American Airlines would add a sixth daily flight to DFW International Airport – one of the world’s busiest. McAllen had already recently added daily non-stop flights to Mexico City and seasonal service Los Angeles.


“Foremost, we want to provide McAllen and the Rio Grande Valley the best flying experience possible and meet passenger needs and expectations,” said Elizabeth Suarez, City of McAllen Director of Aviation. “We are experiencing tremendous growth and the challenge is to meet that demand. We hope that with facility improvements and more flights we can continue to expand and serve the region.”


Suarez added that double-digit growth is uncommon among similar-sized airports across the country.


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In 2014, McAllen International Airport (MFE) experienced 11 percent growth over 2013 and had the highest number of enplanements (passenger boardings) in seven years with 390,758. That is some 38,000 more boardings than last year – or about 271 fully-loaded American Airlines MD 80 aircraft.


That’s a lot of new boardings, and it helped McAllen capture 50 percent of total market share over Harlingen (39%) and Brownsville (11%). It’s the biggest market advantage McAllen has had over the other airports in at least 8 years.


Overall in 2014 boardings were up for all airlines serving McAllen. American increased by 28 percent, Aeromar was up 37 percent, Allegiant grew by 17 percent and United by 4 percent.