Charleston airport passengers (copy)

Charleston International Airport expects to handle at least 4 million passengers this year. Provided/Charleston County Aviation Authority

Passenger traffic climbed 20 percent in July at Charleston International, extending a double-digit growth spurt for South Carolina's busiest airport. 

Airline boardings increased 19.3 percent from a year ago to 225,590 travelers, the Charleston County Aviation Authority said Friday. The number of arrivals rose 21 percent to 224,693 in July, traditionally a busy vacation month. 

The gains bring the year-to-date tally to nearly 2.6 million leisure and business travelers, or 12 percent more compared to the first seven months of 2017.

Charleston International expects to accommodate at least 4 million flyers by Dec. 31, up from 3.98 million in 2017.

We're starting a weekly newsletter about the business stories that are shaping Charleston and South Carolina. Get ahead with us - it's free.

“This year we have welcomed two new airlines and added a half-dozen new destination cities to the flight schedules," airport CEO Paul Campbell said in a written statement. "We continue to work diligently to offer the air service that our customers want to see in Charleston.”

Charleston International is served by eight carriers: American, Delta, Southwest, United, Frontier, Allegiant, Alaska and JetBlue. They offer nonstop flights to 30 airports in 25 U.S. cities.

The airlines didn't add to their flight schedules in July, but earlier this month, Frontier began offering service to Minneapolis-St. Paul from the Lowcountry. The Twin Cities area is a new nonstop destination from Charleston International.

Contact John McDermott at 843-937-5572 or follow him on Twitter at @byjohnmcdermott