Ontario, California, March 23, 2023 — Jessica Burchett had no clue that she would be the 30 millionth traveler since the airport’s transfer to local control six years ago when she arrived at Ontario International Airport (ONT) today.
The departing Rancho Cucamonga resident and Southwest Airlines® passenger could hardly control her excitement when it was revealed that she had won two free round-trip tickets during a joyful and unexpected celebration at Gate 404.
“I won! Burchett was summoned up to the podium and exclaimed, “I can’t believe it!,” not knowing that there would be a celebration. She didn’t recognize something was wrong until she arrived at the gate and saw the balloons, signage, and TV cameras. She changed her travel plans the night before and wasn’t even supposed to be on the aircraft leaving for Denver with a connection in Minneapolis.
We were actually scheduled to take a later-night flight, but I changed our ticket because I had to get to Minnesota. And it was a ton of joy, and now here we are. I’m so happy,” she exclaimed.
Burchett claimed that she frequently departs from ONT in order to travel to her kids’ sporting activities.
It’s very practical. A few kilometers separate it from the home. It is simple to enter and exit. I love this airport,” she declared. I travel a lot for my kids’ activities, so the free tickets provided by Southwest® are fantastic and a money saver.
A little more than six years have passed since ONT’s return to local control before the 30 million passenger milestone was reached. In that time, as ONT has grown to be one of the aviation industry’s great success stories, passenger volumes have risen by more than a third. With a 2.8% increase from 2019 and its highest passenger volume since 2008, Ontario International received more than 5.7 million airline passengers in 2018. It was also one of a select few American airports that will surpass pre-pandemic numbers in 2022 on a full-year basis.
“It doesn’t matter that there were 30 million people. Around 30 million people are being affected. That entails the reunion of 30 million individuals with their families.” 30 million visitors annually boost the local economy and generate thousands of employment for residents. According to Alan D. Wapner, president of the Ontario International Airport Authority (OIAA) Board of Commissioners, “that’s what this milestone really means.”
Southwest Airlines’ Ontario Station Manager Jesse Perez said, “On behalf of the nearly 200 Southwest Employees at ONT, we’re delighted to be part of this exciting milestone, connecting our Customers to the people and places that mean most in their lives. “We appreciate our 38-year relationship with Ontario International and look forward to reaching our next achievement.”
About Ontario International Airport
The fastest-growing airport in the United States is Ontario International Airport (ONT), claims Global Traveler, a renowned magazine for regular flyers. ONT is situated in the Inland Empire, in the heart of Southern California, about 35 miles to the east of central Los Angeles. It is a full-service airport that provided nonstop commercial jet service to 26 main airports in the United States, Mexico, Central America, and Taiwan before the coronavirus pandemic. You can find more details at www.flyOntario.com. Follow @flyONT on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.
About the Ontario International Airport Authority (OIAA)
In order to provide overall direction for the management, operations, development, and marketing of ONT for the benefit of the Southern California economy and the inhabitants of the airport’s four-county catchment area, the City of Ontario and the County of San Bernardino formed the OIAA in August 2012. Mayor Pro Tem of Ontario Alan D. Wapner, former mayor of Riverside Ronald O. Loveridge, Ontario City Council Member Jim W. Bowman, San Bernardino County Supervisor Curt Hagman, and retired business leader Julia Gouw are the OIAA Commissioners. (Commissioner).