Airports in Missouri

What Airports are There in Missouri?

There are 131 public-use and 248 private airports in Missouri. Moreover, there are three international airports in Missouri. They are vital because they connect mid-western and northern parts of the United States.

Regularly scheduled flights are available from five airports in the state (two medium-sized international and three small, regional ones for domestic flights). The majority of the state’s air traffic is concentrated in two airports: St. Louis Lambert International Airport (STL) and Kansas City International Airport (MCI). Together, they handle almost 12 million passengers per year.

St. Louis Lambert International Airport (STL) is the state’s largest and busiest one, with 6.7 million passengers per year. Its on-time performance is 80.92 percent, while the national average is 79.99 percent. On-time departure performance is lower than the national average: 77.6% vs. 81.56%. The smallest one in the state is Kirksville Regional Airport (IRK) (5 thousand passengers per year).

In total, all the airports in the state handle around 14 million travelers every year, accounting for 1.64% of total air traffic in the U.S.

List of Airports in Missouri

  • 1. St. Louis Lambert International Airport (STL). This is the biggest international airport in the state. It had over 259 departures every day to 78 locations in 2019. More than 6.3 million passengers passed through its gates in 2020.
  • 2. Kansas City International Airport (MCI). This public-use airport had around 4.4 million passengers in 2020. For December 2020, there were 100 scheduled aircraft departures. The most popular destination in the period from August 2020 to July 2021 is Denver, Colorado (294 thousand passengers). The airport has three runways.
  • 3. Springfield–Branson National Airport (SGF). This public airport is the third largest of all airports in Missouri. It offers nonstop flights to 13 cities in the U.S. In 2019, it had 1.1 million passengers. The most popular destination in the period from August 2020 to July 2021 is Dallas–Fort Worth, Texas (110 thousand passengers).
  • 4. Columbia Regional Airport (COU). In 2021, the airport had 53 thousand enplanements. It’s served by two airlines: American Eagle and United Express airlines. This is the unique commercial airport located in Mid-Missouri. The most popular destination is Chicago.
  • 5. Joplin Regional Airport (JLN). On average, this public airport has 27 thousand enplanements per year. It’s served by one airline (United Express). The most sought-after destination is Chicago.

Most Popular Airlines

Apart from Air Canada, most Missouri airports are served by U.S.-based airlines. These are their names:

  • 1. United Airlines
  • 2. Southwest Airlines
  • 3. Frontier Airlines
  • 4. American Airlines

Destinations

According to statistics of flight searches, the most popular destinations in the Missouri airports are as follows:

  • 1. Kansas City (45% of all searches)
  • 2. St. Louis (41%)
  • 3. Springfield (10%)
  • 4. Columbia (2%)
  • 5. Joplin (1%)

Missouri Aviation History

Aviation in Missouri has a rich history. It all started in 1927 when Charles Lindbergh flew from Richards Field in Raytown to the Peninsula Field in Kansas City. This marked the beginning of the aviation era in Missouri. Lindbergh thought that Kansas City could become the most important hub in the U.S., thanks to its central location. And it truly was in 1931 when Transcontinental and Western Airlines (now known as TWA) established their headquarters in Kansas City.

Charles Lindbergh and Lou Holland (President of the Kansas City Chamber of Commerce) contributed to the construction of the New Richards Field airport, which was one of the best in the country at the time (now it’s called «Charles B. Wheeler Downtown Airport»).

St. Louis Lambert International Airport (STL), the biggest among the major airports in Missouri, is named after Albert Bond Lambert, a prominent aviator from St. Louis who served in the U.S. Army during World War I and was promoted to Major. He worked tirelessly his entire life to make his hometown the center of aviation in Missouri that it is today. In 1920, Major Lambert and the Missouri Aeronautical Society rented 170 acres of farmland. Later, it became known as St. Louis Flying Field. In 1923, it was renamed «Lambert St. Louis Flying Field.» Now it is known as the St. Louis Lambert International Airport.