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By Tracey Leong

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — For the third consecutive year, BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport saw a record number of passengers, and they continue to be the busiest airport in the region.

William Diaz, who lives in Colleg Park, Maryland, says he travels through BWI because of the convenience.

“It’s only 25 minutes from home, and the fact that all the non-stop flights back home to Puerto Rico, most of them come from here,” he said.

Millions flock to the airport each year, including Meagan Rucker of Laurel.

“We use it regularly,” she said. “We have only flown out of BWI.”

The airport finished out last year with 26 million travelers.

“Pretty excited about it, I think its a product of a very healthy environment,” says Ricky Smith of the Maryland Aviation Administration. “People feel confident about the economy in Maryland, and so they are willing to fly.”

The popular airport also ranks above the rest in the area when it comes to overall experience and growth.

“Number one from a passenger standpoint, number one from a customer service standpoint and each year we are getting progressively better than the other airports in the region,” Smith said.

Rucker would agree.

“An efficient job with their security, and they do an excellent job with their flights getting in and out, so like I said, a great experience is worth coming back to,” she said.

A recent study shows that since 2015, BWI has generated $9.3 billion in economic activity for the state and region — a thriving airport with impressive numbers and satisfied customers.

BWI is the 22nd busiest airport in the country, and they continue to see growth with their airlines and different destinations.The airport is also adding six gates for international travel that will be ready to use this fall.

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(© Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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