The arrivals hall with the Chalchiutlicue artworks by Marela Zacarías (Photo: Port of Seattle)

Seattle-Tacoma International is one of the most important American airports, especially in the international arena. This position is due to the presence of Boeing, Amazon and Microsoft

in the greater metropolitan area of the city, which attracts businessmen and international travelers.

In 2019, the airport welcomed 51.8 million passengers, of which nearly 12% were on international routes. Although traffic fell back to 36.15 million passengers in 2021 – after a low of 20.1 million in 2020 – while the number of international passengers reached 1.67 million in 2021.

Passenger traffic in 2022 close to that of 2019

The signs are encouraging due to a strong recovery in international traffic. The airport authorities are already counting on a figure equivalent to 95% of the 2019 figure this year.

On the international side, eight new international services, including five new airlines, have been launched or announced at SEA in the past two years, despite the pandemic. These include Qatar Airways to Doha, Alaska Airlines to Belize, American Airlines to London Heathrow and WestJet to Calgary.

Other carriers are expected to join for the rest of the year. On May 27, Turkish Airlines will begin flights from Istanbul with four flights per week on a 300-seat Boeing 787-9. Finnair will launch flights from Helsinki while Air Canada will offer flights to Montreal

. Both carriers will land in Seattle in June.

Finally, a second French airline will launch its conquest of Seattle in October. Air Tahiti Nui is launching two weekly flights from Papeete in October with Boeing 787-9s. Air France also serves Seattle from CDG

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with

three weekly flights

. The exterior of the newly inaugurated Arrivals Hall (Photo: Port of Seattle)

A new infrastructure for international routes

In total, the number of international flights from Seattle will reach 44 daily services this fall compared to 37 at the beginning of the year and 42 in 2019. 25 international airlines are now landing or taking off from the airport.

To better accommodate international travelers, the airport will

oport has inaugurated a new international arrivals hall. The infrastructure of the International Arrivals Facility significantly improves connecting times, efficiency and service for international travelers.

The IAF nearly doubles the number of international gates. The number of gates is increasing from 12 to 20, with a capacity to process 2,600 passengers per hour. The latest technology for passport control also speeds entry into the U.S. Baggage delivery is faster thanks to an increase in the number of carousels from four to seven. Finally, the minimum connection time for passengers has been reduced from 90 to 75 minutes.

Seattle is still missing traffic to Asia, a very important segment for the hub. But here too, the recovery is taking shape with the reopening of the continent.