Airlines prepare for onslaught of Christmas travelers at area airports
Despite a rise in cases of COVID-19 around the country, the Transportation Security Administration says its staffers have screened more than 2 million people at airports nationwide for the fourth straight day.
Friday saw the most screenings since the Monday after Thanksgiving. And airline officials say that they are ready.
“It’s nice to see that our customers are coming back and flying with us. We’re going to fly close to 8 million customers through United [Airlines] between now and Jan. 3,” says Rodney Cox, vice president of operations at United Airlines. “We’ll probably see close to 50,000 of those customers right here in Newark on Thursday the 23 – which is probably going to be the busiest day of the year so far.”
Cox says that United is flying an average of 4,000 flights per day, the highest since the start of the pandemic. He also says that there is an average of 420,000 customers a day flying with United.
“People want to get out, they want to see their families, they want to travel, they want to see their loved ones. Some of them haven’t seen them for years,” says Cox.
He says that as more people get vaccinated against the virus, they are becoming more comfortable with the idea of flying.
“We will continue to require that all customers wear a mask while in the airport and while on our airplanes,” says Cox.
Cox also says that for international travelers, they should check on restrictions in different countries, since COVID-19 policies are all different.