Alaska is unique in its almost total dependence on general aviation. According to the 2019 Economic Contribution of the Aviation Industry to Alaska’s Economy study, the aviation industry contributed more than $3.8 billion in economic activity throughout Alaska’s airport system.
According to the Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities, there are nearly 400 public-use general aviation airports across the state, and 82% of Alaska’s communities are not connected to the road system. The Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities owns and operates 239 airports statewide, and, according to the FAA, these facilities are home to 8,720 registered aircraft and 9,153 pilots.
According to the 2019 Economic Contribution of the Aviation Industry to Alaska’s Economy study, Alaska’s aviation industry contributed more than $3.8 billion in economic activity in 2017.
According to the same study, Alaska’s airports contributed more than 35,000 jobs to the state economy in 2017.
According to the FAA, Alaska is home to 44 repair stations, 7 FAA-approved pilot schools, 2,465 student pilots and 1,565 flight instructors. The AC-U-KWIK database has 51 fixed-base operators registered in Alaska. According to Helicopter Association International, there are 101 heliports in the state.
According to the University Aviation Association, there is a flight department at the University of Alaska – Anchorage.
Alaska’s rural airport system represents a total economic impact of $1.5 billion, which is roughly 40% of the total statewide economic contribution.