British Columbia

YVR traveller traffic set to top record at 22 million

Vancouver's International Airport (YVR) is booming with predicted total of 22-million passengers passing through its security gates in 2016.

Vancouver Airport now serves 55 destinations worldwide, including new flights to Nanjing, China

YVR usually sees about 70,000 passengers pass through its gates during the peak holiday season in December. (Glen Kugelstadt/CBC)

Vancouver's International Airport is booming, with a predicted total of 22 million passengers passing through its security gates in 2016, breaking all previous traffic records.

That's nearly two million more than in 2015, when the airport saw 20.3 million passengers come through.

The total number of holiday travellers has not yet been tallied, said Vancouver Airport media relations representative Terry Chou.

But the average seen during the peak Christmas period beginning Dec. 19 and ending Dec. 31 is predicted to be about 70,000 passengers.

Top holiday destinations include Calgary, Toronto, Hawaii, Mexico, Southern California and the Asia-Pacific region.

Chou said Vancouver Airport is on a trajectory toward 25 million passengers per year by 2020.

The airport's traffic has been breaking records all year.

Much of the current increase is due to Air Canada's expansion of transpacific flights.

Air Canada flights make up about 50 per cent of all the passenger traffic through Vancouver's Airport.

Xiamen Airlines Boeing 787s started flying out of Vancouver to Xiamen Gaoqi International Airport in 2016. (

The airport saw a myriad of firsts this year with inaugural flights to Nanjing, China that began Dec. 20.

The year-round service will operate three times weekly to Nanjing Lukou International Airport.

"Direct transportation connections like this one will play a major role in driving two-way trade and partnerships," said Teresa Wat, B.C.'s minister of International Trade and Asia Pacific Strategy and Multiculturalism.

Vancouver's international airport is getting busier than ever with new non-stop flights to Nanjing China that started Dec. 20. (CBC)