The Alaska International Airport System - comprised of Ted Stevens Anchorage and Fairbanks International Airports - is home to over 30 international and domestic airlines providing passenger and cargo service throughout Alaska, the United States, Europe, and Asia. It's also an extraordinary economic engine; serving nearly 6 million passengers per year and accounting for 1 in 7 and 1 in 20 jobs in Anchorage and Fairbanks, respectively.
Anchorage, the larger of the two airports, is renown as the 3rd largest airport in the world for cargo throughput and the 2nd largest in the United States for landed weight. Both airports serve as alternates for one another; equipped to handle any size and type aircraft, anytime, with state-of-art landing systems and terminal facilities. Fairbanks, located north of the Alaska Range, serves as the primary hub for Northern Alaska and both airports serve as gateways to Alaska, Denali National Park, and beyond.
Anchorage and Fairbanks are separated by Denali, the highest mountain peak in North America, resulting in distinct weather patterns and never a simultaneous closure. Whether transiting across the Pacific from Asia, the Atlantic from Europe, or the continental United States from a host of major cities, airlines are assured a place to land.
The United States Congress authorized construction of ANC and FAI in 1948 and commercial operations began in 1951. The Alaska Statehood Act of 1959 provided, among other matters, that the Airports be transferred from the federal government to the State at no cost; however, the State did not assume management of them until 1960. In 1961, the Alaska State Legislature created the Alaska International Airport System (AIAS) and it has operated as a state owned enterprise fund under the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (DOT&PF) ever since.
Questions or comments contact AIAS Staff