Airport traffic statistics suggest the nodal points of travel, the air travel transit points, and where the travel action is taking place. Here are the passenger traffic figures for major gateway cities in the non-communist world for 1981:

O’Hare, Chicago, 111. 37,992,151

Los Angeles, Ca. 32,722,534

Heathrow, London 27,512,945

Kennedy, N.Y. 25,533,929

Tokyo Haneda 21,235,185

Miami, Fla. 19,848,593

San Francisco, Ca. 19,848,491

Osaka, Japan 17,087,548

Orly, Paris, France 17,012,241

Frankfort, Germany 16,953,045

Toronto, Canada 14,512,400

Honolulu, Hawaii 14,344,225

Mexico Int’l 12,961,727

Fiumicino, Rome, Italy 10,923,564

Gatwick, London, Eng. 9,885,847

Schiphol, Amsterdam 9,668,976

The maps on pages 12 and 13 show the major airports of the world. They are both destinations and transit points. Studying these maps is a good way to familiarize oneself with the world’s travel grids.

Whereas travel other than by air can take days, air travel is figured at something like five hundred miles per hour, once a plane leaves the airport. Looking at the air distances between major cities as seen on page 14, travel times between cities can be estimated. The distance between New York and London is seen as 3,473 miles. Dividing by five hundred gives a flight time of close to seven hours. Flight times going east are usually shorter than flying west. Airlines take advantage of the jet streams that flow west to east. Airliners flying west usually are slowed down by the jet streams.


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