Travelers of all ages excited to hit the skies again for Thanksgiving

Published: Nov. 24, 2021 at 12:45 PM EST
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Get ready and get set for the traveling season.

Last weekend, TSA screened more than four million people at airports across the country. That trend expected to keep going up.

The key to success this holiday season is about arriving early to the airport. Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport representatives said the minimum time you need to give yourself is an hour and a half, and even that could be pushing it.

Kids, dogs and families getting to their gate anyway they can the day before Thanksgiving. Natalie Chaudoin, spokesperson for Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport, said they are ready for it all.

“We expect to see some record crowds this week,” Chaudoin said. “In the ten day period we’re looking to have about 120,000 total passengers.”

TSA estimates 20 million people will fly for the holiday. Laila Wickliffe is one of them. She’s celebrating her 8th birthday with her first flight.

“This just feels so exciting,” Laila said.

Laila was with her sister and mom for their 6:10 a.m. flight to Arizona. The time and lines made her mom a little nervous, but Laila was focused on the highlights.

“I can’t wait to test out the comfortable seats and the food,” Laila said.

Hopefully she’s not disappointed. Also headed to Arizona is Sebe Topper, who’s also celebrating a birthday.

“I’m excited to get back to traveling because I get to do more things,” Topper said.

Whether you’re packing for a celebration, to bring back leftovers or with intention. Rusty Judy was found in the TSA line with just a jumbo Ziplock bag.

“Just trying to get home,” Judy said. “I’ve got some bare essentials, medicine and some socks.”

In the lines, travelers are looking forward to the time they’ll have and not the moments lost.

“I get to go home and spend time with my grandkids,” Judy said. “I have two grandsons and a great granddaughter that was born about three months ago.”

Topper and his family are on their way to visit old friends.

“They really bring back our old memories,” Topper said.

Breeze and Spirit airlines joined the tarmac this year at the airport, allowing more people to take off from Louisville than before.

If you are picking up someone from the airport, Chaudoin said feel free to pick them up from the departures area on the upper level. The lower level arrivals section is expected to stay congested.

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