Reno-Tahoe passenger counts climb 6 percent |

Reno-Tahoe passenger counts climb 6 percent

Bill O’Driscoll

A Delta flight lands at the Reno-Tahoe Airport on Oct. 11.

The numbers just keep rising at Reno-Tahoe International Airport.

The latest data showed the number of passengers passing through the airport in September totaled 345,280 — an increase of 6 percent from September 2016.

Moreover, for the first nine months of 2017, Reno-Tahoe International Airport saw more than 3 million passengers for a 10 percent increase over same period a year earlier.

And September's increase marked the 28th straight month of positive growth in passenger numbers on a year-over-year comparison.

"We've added more than 2,000 seats to our market over the past 18 months, and we can see the community is filling those seats," said Brian Kulpin, vice president of marketing and public affairs at Reno-Tahoe International Airport.

"We have a saying, 'Use it or lose it,' and the community has listened. We're out there trying to bring even more air service to our market."

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The good news didn't stop there.

At Reno-Tahoe International, total seat capacity rose 8.1 percent and flights increased 2.4 percent compared with September 2016. In total, Reno-Tahoe was served by eight airlines providing 1,748 departures to 21 nonstop destinations.

Air cargo business was another matter.

September cargo totaled more than 12.4 million pounds at the airport, a decrease of 6.8 percent from September 2016, the report showed.

And for the first nine months of 2017, Reno-Tahoe International Airport handled 112.8 million pounds of air cargo, a decrease of under 1 percent over the year.

Passenger counts could continue to improve in the fourth quarter based on Frontier Airlines' start of three-days-a-week nonstop flights from Reno to Denver on Nov. 21. Frontier is using a 180-seat Airbus A320 aircraft.

And starting on Jan. 3, Alaska Airlines will introduce a 76-seat Embraer E175 aircraft on select routes, offering more space than current aircraft used at Reno-Tahoe International Airport.