RALEIGH-DURHAM INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT – More than one million passengers traveled through Raleigh-Durham International Airport in November, according to the Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority.

And that’s a 13% increase in passenger traffic compared to a year ago, as the airport continues to rebound from a drop in passenger traffic following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020.

“We expect to close the year strong as travelers make their way home for the holidays or visit family and friends,” said Michael Landguth, president and CEO of the Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority in a statement on Thursday.  “We have added new airlines, new destinations and new amenities this year that we hope will provide our guests with an outstanding experience during this busy season.”

According to the airport, continued “heavy traffic” is expected during the winter holiday season.

RDU falls one spot in customer satisfaction survey, now tied as 4th best large airport

What’s new at RDU

In 2023, a new carrier will begin flight to and from RDU: Breeze Airways is now set to run five routes including to Jacksonville, Florida, Columbus, Ohio, New Orleans, Louisiana, Providence, Rhode Island, and Hartford, Connecticut.

In other airport news, JetBlue has resumed international service to Cancun, Mexico.

But it’s not just travel by air that was on the docket for Thursday’s meeting of the Airport Authority Board.

The Airport Authority Board approved the airport to enter into a lease agreement with Wake County that would begin on the first of the year in 2023.  And the purpose of that lease, which will lease 151 acres of property to Wake County, who will manage “sanctioned mountain biking trails” with the goal of putting “an end to the environmental damage illegal trails are creating on airport property.”

Prior to 2020, the Raleigh-Durham International Airport welcomed more than 14 million passengers in 2019.  And, compared to last year, customer satisfaction at the airport fell, though the airport still states that it is ranked among the top five large airports for passenger satisfaction.