TSA: Around 20 million to travel for Thanksgiving holiday, close to pre-pandemic levels

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FILE – Two airplane pilots pass by a line of passengers while waiting at a security check-in line at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago, ahead of Fourth of July weekend, July 1, 2021. The number of people traveling for Thanksgiving this year is expected to rebound to pre-coronavirus pandemic levels, but the Transportation Security Administration say it is ready to handle the surge. (AP Photo/Shafkat Anowar, File)

WASHINGTON (WAVY) — Officials from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) say they expect airport security checkpoints nationwide to be busy during the upcoming Thanksgiving travel period.

From Friday, Nov. 19, through Sunday, Nov. 28, the agency says they expect to screen about 20 million passengers during the Thanksgiving holiday.

TSA Administrator David Pekoske says they are expecting close to pre-pandemic levels this holiday, however, he advises those traveling to plan ahead.

The highest travel day in TSA’s history was the Sunday after Thanksgiving in 2019 (pre-pandemic), when nearly 2.9 million individuals were screened at TSA security checkpoints nationwide.

Typically, the busiest days during the Thanksgiving travel period are the Tuesday and Wednesday prior to Thanksgiving and the Sunday afterward. 

The best way to ensure a smooth trip through the security screening process is to arrive early, allow time to park your cars or return rental cars, check your bags with their airline, and get your boarding passes before heading to the security checkpoint.

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