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TSA expecting travel over holidays to hit pre-pandemic levels

Holiday Travel
Posted at 12:58 PM, Dec 21, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-21 16:33:41-05

Cold weather likely isn't going to deter people from traveling as airports nationwide are preparing for the influx of passengers set to travel for Christmas.

According to the National Weather Service, more than 50 million people ranging from Washington state to Maryland are under winter weather warnings and advisories thanks to a powerful winter storm that is set to bring various hazards, including bitterly-cold temperatures and snowfall.

But that isn't stopping Americans from traveling for the upcoming holiday season.

Transportation Security Administration officials said they expect travel near pre-pandemic numbers over the next few days.

In a news release Tuesday, officials said they expect their busiest days to be Thursday and Friday.

TSA Administrator David Pekoske said they saw its highest passenger volume during Thanksgiving, which they hadn't seen since 2019, so they expect the trend to repeat itself.

But the upcoming winter storm could put a damper on travel plans, which has put some airlines on alert.

Delta Airlines has issued a travel advisory for airports in the Atlantic, northeast, northwest mountain, and Pacific northwest regions.

United announced on its website that it waives change fees and any difference in fares on qualifying flights departing on or before Dec. 28 at many U.S. airports.

American Airlines also announced they're waiving change fees on qualifying tickets to and from the 29 listed airports in the northeast that could be affected by the winter storm.

Southwest has also issued a travel advisory for airports in the midwest. They announced on its website that those with qualifying tickets traveling Wednesday through Monday could rebook their flights "without paying any additional charge."