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After bump, passenger numbers slide back at Bob Hope Airport

A month after a surprising uptick in the number of passengers traveling through Bob Hope Airport, the tally in April dipped by roughly 2.4%.

Although March saw the airport’s first rise in passenger numbers in three years, April’s total came in at 330,772 passengers, down from 338,821 during the same period last year, according to statistics released Monday to the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority.

Dan Feger, the airport’s executive director, said that despite the decline, the airport did hit its projected target number of passengers in April, and that the drop could be attributed primarily to JetBlue’s decision last December to stop all daytime flights out of Burbank.

“If we had not had the loss of the JetBlue service, you would be seeing increased passenger loads at this airport,” Feger said.

In April, JetBlue reported 8,115 passengers, a 66% drop from 23,909 in April 2012.

However, Feger said the loss of JetBlue passengers was somewhat offset by the growth of Southwest Airlines, which saw 4% more passengers in April compared to the same period last year, rising from 240,038 passengers to 249,668.

During the first four months of 2013, the airport handled 1.24 million passengers, a 5.6% decline from 1.31 million passengers reported during the same period last year.

Meanwhile, other local airports reported varying passenger totals in April. Los Angeles International Airport and John Wayne Airport saw 3.7% and 5.1% increases in passengers, respectively. However, Ontario Airport reported an 8.4% decline, and Long Beach Airport saw a 13.7% drop.

Although the airport’s passenger numbers slid back slightly, one bright spot for Bob Hope Airport was the continued growth in parking revenues, which rose by about 3.6%.

The airport brought in roughly $1.57 million in April, compared to $1.52 million in April 2012.

This was the second consecutive month for an improvement in parking revenues over the year prior, which Feger said was driven by recent rate increases in the airport’s parking lots.

“It is our hope we will continue to track that way for the rest of the fiscal year and beyond,” Feger said.


Follow Daniel Siegal on Google+ and on Twitter: @Daniel_Siegal.

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