Local airports continued to tell a tale of two markets in February as passenger counts dropped yet again while cargo tonnage surged to new heights.

The cumulative passenger count at Los Angeles International, Ontario International, Hollywood-Burbank and Long Beach airports was 1.9 million for February, down from 1.98 million in January.

That marked the lowest total since August as the region struggled with the third and most severe wave of coronavirus infections. Cumulative passenger traffic was down 72.8 percent from February 2020.

But total cargo tonnage at the four airports rose 34 percent in February compared to the same month in 2020, reaching 281,000 tons. 


Passenger traffic at the four airports in February declined 4.1 percent from January, marking the fourth consecutive monthly drop from October’s pandemic-era peak of 2.5 million passengers. The drop came despite improvement throughout the month in Covid case counts and hospitalizations.

February’s passenger traffic decline was most significant at LAX, which saw 1.7 million passengers for the month compared to nearly 5 million in the same period in 2020. That’s a year-over-year decrease of 72.2 percent.