Thousands flock to the airport for early Thanksgiving Day getaway

The airlines say this will be one of the busiest Thanksgiving weeks for traveling.

Chris Keating

Nov 20, 2023, 10:50 AM

Updated 217 days ago

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Airlines are expecting big numbers when it comes to travelers getting away to see relatives this Thanksgiving. Management with United Airlines at Newark Liberty International Airport expects a 15% surge in travelers over last year.
United Airlines reports that 5.9 million passengers will be flying on their planes over the 11-day travel period and other airlines are also expecting to see more people flying this week. American Airlines expects 7.8 million passengers on its planes over 13 days.
The Monday before Thanksgiving is usually as one of the best days to get away. The lines at security checkpoints and baggage check-ins have been minimal. Seasoned holiday flyers tell News 12 they intentionally booked their getaway on Monday because it’s usually less crowded at the airports and the seats were cheaper compared to Tuesday or Wednesday.
Kirsten Guill flew in from Chicago with her husband and three boys. They will be spending the week with family in Normandy Beach along the Jersey Shore.
“It was a little bit less expensive and we are able to get in and out without much of a challenge. So it worked out well,” she said.
Cindy Haag flew in from Wisconsin to seek her 16-year-old son march with his high school band at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. She says the getaway has been easy so far.
“My travel experience was wonderful. It was nonstop we got checked right in and the flight was amazing,” Haag said.
Both women say they will be leaving to go home before Sunday. That’s a good plan considering the airlines report that the Sunday after Thanksgiving is always the busiest day to fly.
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