American Airlines preps for busy holiday season with additional departure times at major hubs

Nov 30, 2019

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The holiday season is always a busy time for the travel industry. People are flying home to see family members, taking advantage of holiday time off to travel and escaping the cold weather to more tropical destinations. As one of the largest U.S. airlines, American Airlines is no exception to this time of year’s hustle and bustle.

From Nov. 22 through Nov. 28, American Airlines and regional partners transported more than 4.1 million customers across nearly 43,000 flights. That kind of traffic will continue into December, according to American Airlines. In fact, Dec. 1, 2019, is set to be the second busiest day of the year for AA in terms of scheduled flights with 7,047 scheduled departures. Dec. 2 has 6,879 departures scheduled.

(Photo by JT Genter/The Points Guy)
American Airlines is prepping operations for a busy 2019 holiday travel season. (Photo by JT Genter/The Points Guy)

In order to accommodate increased holiday traffic and minimize overbooked flights and cancellations, American Airlines has added additional late-night/early morning departures from hubs at CLT, PHL, PHX and DFW. For example, DFW has added an additional 78 departures for Dec. 2 between the hours of 12:05 a.m CT and 2:44 a.m. CT.

So far this holiday travel season, flight cancellations from the airline’s mainline operation have thankfully been minimal. Only a handful of flights out of 20,686 scheduled departures from Nov. 22 to Nov. 28 were canceled due to weather or air traffic control.

Even still, it’s always good to prepare for packed flights and potential delays during the holiday season. Airlines, including American, are battling increased traffic and potential winter weather that could impact departures.

Bottom line

(Infographic courtesy of American Airlines)
(Infographic courtesy of American Airlines)

The added departures should ensure more AA flyers can get to their destinations on time. However, that doesn’t mean you won’t see longer security lines, packed flights and potential delays due to increased holiday traffic.

Make sure you’re getting to the airport with enough time to clear security and be prepared for longer security lines — even if you have CLEAR and/or TSA PreCheck. It’s also a good idea to sign up for mobile alerts and flight notifications when possible (no matter what airline you’re flying) so that you are getting real-time updates on gate changes, delays or cancellations. American Airlines also allows you to check in, change seats and request a same-day flight change through the app.

Featured image by JT Genter/The Points Guy.

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