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Tampa International Airport sees 'sustained' passenger increase

The airport says the number of flyers has increased steadily over the last two months.
Credit: PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images
A unidentified passenger jet makes its final approach to Tampa International Airport May 23, 2008, in Tampa, Florida. AFP Photo/Paul J. Richards (Photo credit should read PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)

TAMPA, Fla. — Some good news: Tampa International Airport says there's a "reason for optimism" after seeing a couple of months of steady growth in the number of passengers flying out of the airport. 

The airport reports the number of passengers jumped from about 86,000 in April to 230,000 in May, which is an increase of about 167 percent. According to the airport, those numbers are better for June -- the airport has already seen 200,000 passengers through the middle of this month. 

For the first time in months, the airport reports it's had more than 20,000 passengers fly out of TPA in a single day. 

The airport says from the week of April 12 through the week of June 7, the total number of passengers traveling in the United States increased by about 356 percent. The airport reports TPA's increase "outpaced" the national average with passenger growth of 476 percent. 

The airport says that's a good sign and could mean travel in and out of Tampa Bay might rebound faster than other parts of the country.

“The energy at the Airport today is so different from just a few weeks ago,” said Chris Minner, TPA’s Executive Vice President of Marketing. “We’re seeing things pick back up with every passing week. Looking at upcoming flight schedules and future booking information, it’s clear there’s growing demand for summer travel.” 

The airport says that while the numbers are "pointed in the right direction," COVID-19 remains a threat. The airport says it will continue to maintain its "Tampa Ready" program, which includes enhanced cleaning of facilities, social distancing signage and protocols and mandatory face masks for employees and tenants.

Passengers are still highly encouraged to wear face masks and follow safety guidelines to minimize exposure.

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