Travel Airlines prepare for record 51M holiday travelers

19:31  06 december  2017
19:31  06 december  2017 Source:   usatoday.com

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Airlines prepare for record 51 million holiday travelers for Christmas, New Year's. Airlines project they'll carry 51 million passengers for the holidays from Dec. 15 through Jan. 4, a record that would surpass 49.3 million last year. Post to Facebook.

WASHINGTON – Airlines are preparing for a record 51 million passengers for the holiday season, a 3.5% increase from the previous peak of 49.3 million last year. Airlines are offering 91,000 more seats per day on larger planes or additional flights to meet the demand for 80

The Santa Claus from Lapland of Finland, Joulupukki, greets children at Liszt Ferenc airport in Budapest on Dec. 1, 2017 as he arrives for a few-day-trip to celebrate Santa Claus Day on December 06. © ATTILA KISBENEDEK, AFP/Getty Images The Santa Claus from Lapland of Finland, Joulupukki, greets children at Liszt Ferenc airport in Budapest on Dec. 1, 2017 as he arrives for a few-day-trip to celebrate Santa Claus Day on December 06. WASHINGTON – Airlines are preparing for a record 51 million passengers for the holiday season, a 3.5% increase from the previous peak of 49.3 million last year.

Airlines are offering 91,000 more seats per day on larger planes or additional flights to meet the demand for 80,000 additional daily passengers for the holiday period from Dec. 15 through Jan. 4, according to the trade group Airlines for America. Airline staffs have grown for nearly four straight years, the group said.

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Airlines are preparing for a record 51 million passengers for the holiday season, a 3.5% increase from the previous peak of 49.3 million last year. Airlines are offering 91,000 more seats per day on larger planes or additional flights to meet the demand for 80

Airlines prepare for record 51 M holiday travelers for Christmas, New Year's. “With record -level travelers hitting the road this holiday , drivers must be prepared for delays in major metros,” said Graham Cookson, chief economist and head of research at Inrix.

The growth in passengers coincided with a growing economy and fares rising less than inflation, according to airlines.

“With affordable fares and expanded route options, flying to see family, friends and loved ones this holiday season is more accessible than ever before,” said John Heimlich, the trade group’s chief economist. “Intense competition within the airline industry is enabling passengers to choose the flights that most closely match their preferences and budgets.”

The busiest travel days with about 2.7 million passengers each will be Thursday Dec. 21, Friday Dec. 22 and Tuesday Dec. 26, according to Airlines for America.

The lightest days without about 2.25 million passengers each are projected to be Dec. 16, Dec. 24, Dec. 25 and Dec. 31, according to the group.

Thanksgiving Air Travel to Shatter Records Yet Again

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The record travel period for Christmas and New Year would follow a record Thanksgiving travel season. The Transportation Security Administration called it one of the busiest travel weeks in its 16-year history of federal screening.

Sunday Nov. 26 had 2.6 million passengers and crew members screened, which was the fifth-busiest day since TSA was established after the terror attacks Sept. 11, 2001.

TSA said 98.1% of passengers waited 20 minutes or less in checkpoint lines. And 99.2% of Precheck passengers, who receive expedited screening in exchange for providing more information about themselves, waited 10 minutes or less, according to TSA.

Screening had been enhanced because of security concerns before the holiday. But TSA Administrator David Pekoske said workers tried to keep lines moving — without sacrificing security — with the help of teams with bomb-sniffing dogs.

“We wanted to make sure that we paid attention to the passenger experience,” Pekoske told the American Association of Airport Executives conference on aviation security in Arlington, Va., on Tuesday.

 

Here's How Many American Travelers Flew in 2017 .
A total of 88 percent of survey respondents reported taking a commercial flight in their lifetime. In 2017, almost every age group and household income level reported taking more trips, especially the travelers earning $75,000-$99,999, who took an average of 5.1 trips in 2017, an increase from the average of 3.4 trips in 2016.As for those who flew in 2017, 71 percent of all trips were taken for personal reasons, an increase from both 2016 and 2015. Travelers credit an improving economy and the increasing availability of affordable airfare options for the jump.

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