Expect Record Crowds If You’re Flying for Labor Day

Aug 20, 2019

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More people than ever will be taking to the skies this year for Labor Day, the holiday weekend that marks the unofficial close of summer.

An estimated 17.5 million passengers will fly between Aug. 28 and Sept. 3 this year, according to the trade group Airlines for America (A4A). That’s up from the 16.9 million that flew around the long weekend in 2018.

Aug. 30 is expected to be the peak of the end-of-summer rush this year, with A4A predicting that US airlines will carry 2.98 million passengers.

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“With fares at historic lows and customer satisfaction at historic highs, travelers continue to take to the skies in record numbers,” John Heimlich, A4A’s chief economist, said in a statement.

Southwest, American and United are still struggling to maintain their full schedules as the 737 MAX grounding continues. But even so, US carriers are collectively adding a total of 109,000 seats per day to accommodate the extra demand over the holiday weekend, A4A said.

If you’re heading to the airport, make sure to leave extra time for security — bigger crowds almost always mean longer lines at TSA checkpoints. And, if you haven’t already, check out TPG’s credit card recommendations to find one that will help you get PreCheck. Those lines will likely be longer than usual, too, but at least you’ll get to keep your shoes on.

Featured photo by John Greim/LightRocket via Getty Images

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