Cargo the bright spot last year at Ontario International Airport

By Rachelle Harry

Cargo remained the bright spot for California’s Ontario International (ONT) Airport last year, as passenger demand declined due to Covid-19 restrictions.

Throughout 2020, the hub experienced an 18.2% year-on-year increase in cargo demand to 898,188 tonnes.

It attributed this growth to “ramped up” operations, which enabled it to manage the e-commerce surge, particularly in the latter months of the year.

In December last year, the hub handled 6% more cargo than in the same month of 2018.

Meanwhile, ONT experienced a 17% year-on-year increase in mail shipments last year, to 25,000 tonnes.

In December last year, reflecting the business of the holiday season, mail shipments increased by 340% to 3,600 tonnes.

Mark Thorpe, chief executive officer of the Ontario International Airport Authority, commented: “Ontario solidified its position as a leading air cargo hub in 2020. 

“Working closely with our freight partners, we not only withstood the surge in e-commerce shipments early in the year, we ramped up quickly to manage double-digit increases in commercial freight volume as Californians hunkered down at home and shopped online for vital household supplies.”

Impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, ONT’s passenger traffic last year declined by 54.5% year on year.

Looking forward, Thorpe said: “We stand ready to support airlines operating at Ontario and we are eager to welcome back our customers as coronavirus vaccines become more widely available and travel routines return to more normal levels.”

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