Airport Authority Board Approves $249 Million Budget 

FY22-23 Plan Invests in Growth, Talent and Guest Experience

The Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority Board approved a $249.3 million budget for the fiscal year beginning April 1. The budget for FY22-23 includes $94.7 million in operating expenses, a 16% increase over last fiscal year, and $70.1 million in spending on capital projects, an increase of 69% from the previous fiscal year. It is based on a conservative estimate of nine million passengers in FY22-23, compared to 9.6 million passengers in FY21-22.   

 “This budget positions RDU to restart projects from the Vision 2040 master plan and accommodate the growth we expect as our recovery continues,” said Michael Landguth, president and CEO of the Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority. “As we renew our focus on capital projects, we will also strengthen investments in our workforce, the community and guest experience.”  

 The FY22-23 budget includes adjustments to rates that were reduced or held steady during the pandemic, including fees paid by airlines, rent for concessionaire office space, guest and employee parking rates and ground transportation fees. 

Air Service: More than 695,000 passengers flew through RDU in February. That was a 128% increase over February of last year, but still 28% lower than the same month in 2020. The average number of daily departures was 175, an increase of 72% over 2021 but 15% lower than 2020.  

E-Commerce Technology: Travelers will be able to make hotel and rental car reservations, take advantage of special offers and enjoy a rewards program while seamlessly purchasing products and services for parking, food, beverage, retail and flights at A pilot program at RDU will test an eCommerce system provided by the U.K.-based company rezcomm.  The platform will be integrated with the website and provide customers with new online airport and travel purchasing options. As online sales continue to grow, this comprehensive marketplace solution will help customers maximize their purchasing power and meet the demand for a user-friendly online experience.  

Terminal 1 Move: Spirit will move from Terminal 2 to Terminal 1 in mid-April to help RDU accommodate growth. The relocation was planned for 2020 but was postponed due to the pandemic.  Spirit’s move will provide capacity for airlines that operate out of Terminal 2, including international flights that need access to U.S. Customs facilities. Spirit will operate from newly activated gates A1 – A4, while Southwest uses A5 – A8.  

 Mask Mandate: The federal mandate that requires masks to be worn in airports and on flights has been extended to April 18. The mandate was set to expire March 18 but was extended for one month while the CDC develops new policy guidance. During that time, the CDC will revise its framework for when, and under what circumstances, masks will be required at public transportation hubs.  

Avelo Joins RDU: Avelo Airlines will become RDU’s 13th airline in May. Avelo will fly nonstop to Tweed-New Haven Airport in Southern Connecticut, a new destination that provides a gateway to New England and the New York metro area. Avelo will fly the route five days a week beginning May 26th and expand to six days a week in mid-June.    

Frontier Expands: Frontier Airlines is expanding their flights and destinations at RDU. The airline will add eight destinations this spring, including Islip, New York; Providence, Rhode Island and Syracuse in late April. Flights to Newburgh, New York; Indianapolis; Detroit; Cincinnati and New Orleans are scheduled for late May.