The most internationally connected airports at a glance

  • Chicago O'Hare International Airport
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Published 2018-10-18 13:00

Today, air connectivity plays a prominent role in global mobility as thousands of people transit by airports. Reasons for moving are many: work, business, adventure travel, etc., and prospective destinations are as many. If you're planning to travel soon, Expat.com gives you an insight into the world's most internationally connected airports.

The most connected airports

London Heathrow Airport
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It shouldn't surprise you that London Heathrow Airport is the most internationally connected airport with British Airways serving the most significant number of flights. London has always been an attractive destination for international students, professionals, businesspeople, and tourists – which explains the impressive yearly number of international arrivals. It's worth noting that London Heathrow Airport has the potential of ensuring 66,000 regional and international arrivals and departures in a single day within a six-hour window. One of the unique features of this airport is its location at the crossroads of emerging markets and major destinations in Europe and North America, including the USA and Canada. If you've moved to London, for example, holidays can be an excellent opportunity to take a trip to neighbouring cities or countries.

Frankfurt and Amsterdam's airports are the most internationally connected airports after London Heathrow Airport. Frankfurt International Airport is located thirteen kilometres south-west of the city centre, so you can easily get there by car or by train. It's the ideal place to travel to major cities like Munich, Hamburg, Brussels, and Amsterdam. With Lufthansa being the leading airline company, Frankfurt Airport welcomes more than 58 million passengers every year. Amsterdam-Schiphol can boast of some 63.6 million regional and international arrivals in 2016. This airport connects the Dutch capital city to major European cities thanks to companies like KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Easy Jet, and Corendon Dutch Airlines, etc.

Chicago and Toronto international airports are the most internationally connected airports in North America. Chicago O'Hare airport that has the capacity of accommodating the most passengers and providing the most significant number of flights to a wide range of destinations in the USA and around the world during peak periods. Toronto's Lester B. Pearson Airport welcomes more than 31 million passengers per year with Air Canada being its main airline company. Mexico City and Sao Paulo Guarulhos international airports the most connected ones in Latin America.

Beijing is home to the largest and most internationally connected airport in Asia. Beijing-Capital Airport can provide an incredible number of flights during peak periods since it welcomes some 78 million passengers per year. It has three different terminals serving domestic and international flights. However, Shanghai overtook Beijing as a megahub over past years as there are more domestic than international flights from the capital city. Following Beijing and Shanghai, Singapore Changi, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong and Bangkok are next megahubs being some of the most popular travel and business destinations.

You may find it hard to believe, but Istanbul-Atatürk International Airport is ahead of Dubai as an internationally connected airport. Since February, Turkey's largest airport serves more than 273 long-haul flights to a wide range of destinations. It can also boast of welcoming around 60 million passengers in 2015. Today, Istanbul-Atatürk International Airport today can provide for more than 55,000 international routes within a six hours window.

Where you can get low-cost flights

Kuala Lumpur Airport
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You're lucky if you've moved to Asia since most of the low-cost flights are found at its international airports. Surrounded by four major cities, including Kuala Lumpur, Seremban, Malacca and Shah Alam, Kuala Lumpur International Airport is not only Malaysia's largest airport but also the most significant Asian megahub. In 2017, more than 58 million passengers transited there. One of the leading airline companies in Malaysia, Air Asia provides most of the low-cost flights. So if a long weekend is around the corner, why don't you book your tickets for a trip to one of the neighbouring cities or countries? It might be a unique opportunity for you to see more of Asia and explore new cultures.

Located in Jakarta, Soekarno-Hatta International Airport is another world famous megahub for its low cost domestic and regional flights. Perhaps, travelling has never been as accessible anywhere else as it is in Indonesia. Manilla's Ninoy-Aquino International Airport, for its part, welcomed more than 42 million passengers in 2017 with Cebu Pacific being the leading low-cost airline company. Ninoy-Aquino International Airport is, in fact, one of the fifty most internationally connected airports around the world and where you can access to the most popular destinations in Asia.

Rest assured that Asia isn't the only place where you can get low-cost flights. With more than 44 million transits every year, Barcelona International Airport is another popular megahub. Easy Jet, Jetair, Condor, Ryanair and West Jet are some of the low-cost airline companies connecting Barcelona to major European cities. Located in Florida, Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport is the megahub providing the most significant number of low-cost flights in the US. North of Miami, the airport welcomes more than 26 million passengers every year, with leading low-cost airline companies like JetBlue Airways, Spirit Airlines and Southwest Airlines.