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Packed airports and loaded highways ahead of Thanksgiving

Nearly 3 million people in the U.S. are expected to pass through airport security, with some areas experiencing storm delays.
Packed airports and loaded highways ahead of Thanksgiving
Posted at 9:28 AM, Nov 22, 2023

One of the biggest travel days of the year is underway ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday.

Highways are loaded and airports are packed.

Nearly 3 million people in the U.S. are expected to pass through airport security on Wednesday, according to the Transportation Security Administration.

Airport travel didn't seem to be too disrupted on the morning of Thanksgiving Eve, all things considered. Across the country, Flightaware is reporting about 460 flight delays and only about 40 cancellations nationwide as of 8:10 a.m. ET.

"It's not as bad as I thought it would be," said a passenger traveling through Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport — the busiest airport in the world. 

"I got here about three hours early before my flight, parking was fine. I was able to park my car, no traffic coming into the airport, so I got lucky," he told Scripps News. 

Most airports impacted by delays or cancellations are in areas experiencing bad weather. Storms are pushing east toward airports in Boston, D.C., Charlotte and other East Coast hubs — which are the most impacted.

While a storm system caused havoc for travelers on the East Coast Tuesday, it is moving quickly and conditions are expected to improve.

For those hitting the road this Thanksgiving Eve, AAA suggests leaving before 11 a.m. Peak travel time on the roads will be 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.

For storm-impacted areas, travelers will see better conditions later in the day and on Thanksgiving. 

Sunday will also be a peak travel day as people head back home after the holiday weekend.

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