Hancock Airport

WAER file photo

Passenger traffic is slowly starting to creep up at Syracuse’s Hancock airport, but officials say volume is still consistently down 90 to 95 percent from pre-COVID-19 numbers.  Airport Authority Executive Director Jason Terreri says as travelers return, they’ll probably notice some changes.


Passenger traffic at Syracuse's Hancock Airport predictably took a sharp decline in March due to COVID-19 related travel restrictions and traveler comfort levels.  The Syracuse Regional Airport Authority officials say in a release that 47 percent fewer people passed through the terminal compared to March 2019.  

Federal and state orders mean the airport remains open for essential travel only.  Airlines have also dramatically modified their schedules.  Those traveling in the coming weeks are strongly urged to check with their airline to confirm the status of their flight.  

Scott Willis/WAER News

It looks like passenger traffic at Hancock Airport is off to a strong start for 2019.  Officials say enplanements are up almost 11 percent over the first two months of last year.  Hancock Spokesperson Jennifer Sweetland says the addition of new airlines and nonstop routes fueled the increase.

“If you have a large family, it’s quite expensive and with the introduction of the ultra-low cost carriers, it’s gives folks an opportunity to travel…that maybe they weren’t able to travel previously.”

John Smith / WAER News

The $60 million terminal improvement project at Syracuse’s Hancock airport is coming along, but officials today took steps to speed things up to meet a late October completion date.  The Airport Authority Board approved spending additional money to negotiate with contractors and implement an accelerated schedule.  Executive Director Christina Callahan says they want to return to normal operations as soon as possible because the construction is clearly disruptive.

Scott Willis / WAER News

Starting Monday, crews at Syracuse’s Hancock Airport will begin removing the canopy between the parking garage and terminal.  It’s the first phase of a $49 million project to upgrade the airport’s appearance and functionality.  Airport Authority Executive Director Christina Callahan says the canopy project will force the closure of the roadway in front of the airport’s entrances.

"We're going to be redirecting passenger drop-off and pick-ups to the north and south terminals.  The open lot and the garage will still be accessible, as well as rental car return."

John Smith / WAER News

Better parking, flights to more cities, and a facelift for the front of Hancock International Airport highlight the transportation hub's future goals.  The Syracuse Regional Airport Authority issued its annual report Friday.  

  Executive Director Christina Callahan looked back on improved concessions, featuring local beers and food products, and improving the parking garage.  Travelers will also be able to sign up for TSA pre-check starting in October.  Now Callahan is ready to make a few other visible upgrades.