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The 25 Busiest Airports in the USA

Quick Links to and Profiles of the 25 Busiest Airports in the Nation


The United States has some of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, so it stands to reason that the country's airports are some of the globe's busiest. In this quick guide, I rank the USA's busiest airports. Where applicable, I have also listed nearby airports, should you wish to consider alternative airports for your travels.

Busiest Airports: 11-20 | Busiest Airports: 21-25

1. Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport

Location:/Closest City: Atlanta, Georgia
Airport Code: ATL

Hartsfield-Jackson Airport services the bustling Southern city of Atlanta and is the primary airport for visitors to the Southeast U.S. Many southern regional airlines operate out of Hartsfield-Jackson and Delta Airlines has its hub here. ATL has 151 domestic and 28 international gates.

  • Guide to the Atlanta Airport
  • Hartsfield-Jackson Terminal Maps
  • Hartsfield-Jackson Ground Transportation Information
  • 2. O'Hare International Airport

    Location:/Closest City: Chicago, Illinois
    Airport Code: ORD

    O'Hare was the busiest airport in the United States for year until Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson took that title away in the late 1990s. O'Hare is a major connecting airport for destinations in the Midwest and is a hub for United Airlines

  • Guide to O'Hare International Airport
  • 3. Los Angeles International Airport

    Location:/Closest City: Los Angeles, California
    Airport Code: LAX

    Los Angeles International has a new international terminal [video] to help handle the influx of visitors from Asia and the Pacific. Besides being the main airport for travelers to Los Angeles, Hollywood, and Southern California, LAX handles many connections to Hawaii and the destinations on the West Coast.

    Guide to Los Angeles Airports, including LAX and airports in Burbank, Long Beach, Santa Ana, and Ontario.

    4. Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport

    Location:/Closest City: Dallas/Ft. Worth, Texas
    Airport Code: DFW

    Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport is the busiest airport in the state of Texas. Because of the airport's size, the airport has its own postal code and post office. DFW has also been named one of the nation's most tech-friendly airports. American Airlines has a hub at DFW.

  • Guide to Dallas/Ft. Worth International Airport
  • 5. Denver International Airport

    Location:/Closest City: Denver, Colorado
    Airport Code: DEN

    Denver International Airport is the largest airport by area in the United States. Many regional carriers, particularly Frontier Airlines and Southwest Airlines, connect to DEN. Travelers visiting the western states of Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, Idaho, Montana, and New Mexico will likely travel via Denver.

  • Guide to Denver International Airport
  • 6. John F. Kennedy International Airport

    Location:/Closest City: New York City
    Airport Code: JFK

    The main international airport for New York City, JFK sees arrivals and departures from almost every international airline in the world. While a number of domestic flights are handled at JFK, the nearby LaGuardia Airport (near the end of this list) is NYC's main domestic airport. American Airlines and Delta Airlines have a large number of connections through JFK, as does the popular, low-cost airline JetBlue Airways.

  • Guide to John F. Kennedy International Airport
  • 7. San Francisco International Airport

    Location:/Closest City: San Francisco, California
    Airport Code: SFO

    With three domestic terminals and one international terminal, San Francisco International Airport is the second largest airport in California and serves as a hub for west coast travelers to and from Europe and Asia. The hip airline Virgin America has its base of operations at SFO and United has a large hub here. In the late 2000s, SFO's central Terminal 2 underwent extensive renovations to make it a more "green" airport. It reopened in 2011 and is now considered one of the more stylish and passenger-friendly terminals in the U.S.

  • Guide to San Francisco Airports
  • San Francisco Airport Alternatives, including San Jose and Oakland Airports.
  • 8. McCarran International Airport

    Location:/Closest City: Las Vegas, Nevada
    Airport Code: LAS

    Although the glitz of Las Vegas is minutes away, travelers need not leave the McCarran International Airport to gamble, as there are more than 1,000 slot machines available to avid gamblers right inside the terminals. Airlines that serve LAS include low-cost carriers like Southwest and Spirit, as well as United, American, and Delta.

  • Guide to McCarran International Airport
  • 9. Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport

    Location:/Closest City: Phoenix, Arizona
    Airport Code: PHX

    Serving Phoenix and points in the Southwest, Phoenix Sky Harbor has 120 gates in three terminals. The main airlines here are U.S. Airways and Southwest.

  • Guide to Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport
  • 10. George Bush Intercontinental Airport

    Location:/Closest City: Houston, Texas
    Airport Code: IAH

    United Airlines' largest hub is at George Bush Intercontinental Airport, but it is far from the only carrier that services this busy Texan airport. The busiest routes to and from IAH include points in Central and South America.

  • Guide to George Bush Intercontinental Airport
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