MINNEAPOLIS -- Sunday marked the single busiest travel day of the Thanksgiving holiday season at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.
Per an airport spokesman, 36,000 visitors were expected to pass through TSA Sunday. This comes as 4.5 million Americans board a plane this Thanksgiving, a figure up 8% from 2021 and nearing pre-pandemic levels, per AAA.
By 11 a.m. Sunday, wait times were not reflective of the airport's busiest day. At Terminal One, both gates featured a wait time of 10 minutes or less.
"It actually has been great," said traveler Stacy Lucas, who was headed back to Oregon with her family. "We had on time flights on the way out. It's quiet in here this morning. We fly a lot with the kids, so we're not too afraid of the travel over the holiday."
MSP planned for the potential of a rush, bringing on additional staff for the holiday weekend. Fliers say they also anticipated a wait to get to the gate.
"We get there as early as early as possible," said Arch Asawa of Los Angeles, who was heading home with his wife Paige after visiting their son. "We actually were at the airport about four hours prior to our departure time."
Others say even if they did experience a wait time to get through TSA, holiday travel pains are worth it, considering the tradeoff of seeing family and friends.
"We're used to it," said Mary Jo Straus, as she prepared for a flight back to Florida. "My husband and I travel all the time. But I know that it's hard. It's not as glamorous as it used to be. But it's worth it to spend time with your family."
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