Gimpo International Airport, the country’s first airport, was built in 1942 and used for military purposes until 1957. It was designated as an international airport in 1958 and, two years later, in 1960, the government took over control of the airport from the U.S. military. Thereafter, the airport served as the main gateway to the country during important international events such as the 1986 Seoul Asian Games and the 1988 Seoul Olympics. With the dramatic increase in the number of young people leaving the country for backpack travel and family members seeing them off at the airport, the authorities encouraged people to hold welcoming and farewell ceremonies at home. Gimpo Airport now serves as a hub airport for domestic flights and is diversifying its business operations by attracting major shopping malls and other commercial facilities.