If you’re humming the tune to ‘I’ll be home for Christmas’ you’re in luck according to the weather channel because weather conditions are supposed to be good: clear for most of the US for smooth holiday travel albeit crowded.
Predictions for 115 million Americans to travel between Dec. 21 through January 1 were made by the American Automobile Association (AAA) with 104 million people traveling by car. According to Airlines for America, more than 47 million people are expected to fly between Dec. 19 and January 5, which is a 3% increase over 2018.
Airlines for America, had projected this past weekend, Friday and Saturday, Dec. 20-21, would be the busiest days for air travel for the holiday period with almost 3 million people scheduled to fly on each day.
But despite the millions of people traveling by air, the Federal Aviation Authority’s (FAA) Flight Delay Information page showed that most airports nationwide we’re operating smoothly with delays reported at only three airports: Dallas/Fort Worth International, Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International and Teterboro in New Jersey which is 10 miles from New York City. The three airports reported delays longer than 15 minutes due to heavy air traffic flying into Eagle County Regional airport which is close to the popular ski destination of Vail, Colorado.
Good reports came from the country’s busiest airline hub, Atlanta’s Hartfield-Jackson Airport. According to Newsweek, Elise Durham, who is the airport’s communications director, reported that air traffic was moving ‘fluidly.’
On the West Coast, for the Los Angeles airport, Charles Pannunzio, who is the public relations specialist for Los Angeles World Airports, told Newsweek that they were seeing no operational impact and if anything changed the public would be alerted through the Los Angeles airports active social media presence.
Paula Twidale, who is the vice president for AAA Travel, said in a press release that travelers should be used to the crowded highways and airports as this 2019 holiday travel season is the eighth straight year for new record-high travel volumes for the end of the year holiday travel.
However, the heaviest air travel records for some hubs may not happen until after Christmas.
Durham predicts that Atlanta will see its highest volume of travelers on Dec. 26 and Dec. 29 based on their current projections, which she says is always subject to change. She says that TSA is expecting to check-in an excess of almost 90,000 travelers on both days.