The Minneapolis Airport Has Its Busiest Day Ever After the Super Bowl
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
Minneapolis is the 16th busiest airport in the US, but Monday it seemed much closer to number one. Post-Super Bowl crowds are flooding the airport to get back home.
Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP) is expected to have its busiest day in its history, with 70,000 passengers expected to fly out of the facility. And Tuesday is expected to be the airport’s second-busiest day of all time.
“It’s our Super Bowl,” Phil Burke, director of MSP Airport Operations, told The Minneapolis Star Tribune. “This is our game day.”
The airport is encouraging travelers to get to the airport at least three to four hours before their flights. It suggests following the 5-4-3-2-1 strategy. Leave your hotel 5 hours before departure, return your rental car 4 hours before, arrive at the check-in desk with three more hours to go, be in line at the security checkpoint at t-minus two hours and finally be at your departure gate an hour before your flight takes off.
According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, the airport had already screened 22,938 passengers by 8 am, which is more than half the amount of people TSA sees on an average day.
The airport typically sees 34,000 people a day, while the busiest it’s ever been was last March with 47,000 travelers screened.
Fortunately, TSA checkpoints seemed to be moving at a reasonable pace despite the long lines — the longest wait time was 23 minutes at 8am, according TSA spokeswoman Lorie Dankers. Still, lines snaked through the terminal as shown in this timelapse:
All 21 screening lanes were open in the airport’s two terminals, including the international terminal. The airport is staffing up with 100 extra TSA officers and 20 bomb-sniffing dogs.
Odd sights were on display, with airport workers wearing flags to help travelers stay in the correct line.
Airport authorities also deployed 800 sleeping mats, dimmed the lights and kept sound to a minimum for everyone who had left the game but was waiting in the airport overnight for their flight.
Minneapolis is a Delta hub and the airline increased capacity to accommodate the crowds. United added a bunch of one-off flights for the big game, with American doing the same. CBS Minnesota reports that over 1 million visitors came to the Minneapolis metro area for the Super Bowl and about 1,100 private aircraft flew in for the event.
Here’s a peek at air traffic departing from or arriving at MSP this morning.
Featured image by Karen Bleirer / AFP / Getty Images.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 50,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new card in your first three months of card membership. Plus, earn up to $100 back in statement credits for eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants with your card within the first 3 months of membership.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Earn 50,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
- Plus, earn up to $100 back in statement credits for eligible purchases at US restaurants with your card within the first 3 months of membership.
- Accelerate your path to Medallion Status, with Status Boost®. Plus, in 2021 you can earn even more bonus Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) to help you reach Medallion Status.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees