TSA anticipates 42 million travelers this holiday season
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.
Excited to get away for the holidays? So are 42 million other people.
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) anticipates another high-volume travel season this year from now through Jan. 5, 2020, estimating that 42 million travelers will pass through security screening checkpoints nationwide during that time. TSA data backs up similar predictions from major U.S. airlines, which also anticipate a record-breaking travel season. The busiest day is expected to be Sunday, Dec. 22, 2019. Christmas Eve is expected to be the slowest day of the holiday season.
TSA recommends that travelers arrive early enough at the airport to allow time to check in and get through the security screening process. Expect long queues and waits, especially if you don’t have TSA PreCheck or CLEAR biometric screening.
Here’s a brief checklist of all the basics for getting through the hectic holiday rush:
- Arrive earlier than you think you need to, and plan ahead for traffic and delays
- Empty your water bottles and similar containers before entering the security screening line
- Purchase a $19 (one-way) insurance plan for your flight in case of delays or cancellations
- Make sure your boarding pass is marked PreCheck; if not, go to the reservation desk and ask for a new boarding pass
- If you have lounge access, make sure you know which lounges are available to you, where they are and when they are open
- Sign up for CLEAR by Dec. 22, 2019, for a $60 discount and bonus $10 Amazon gift card
If CLEAR isn’t an option in your airport, don’t forget that many travel rewards credit cards reimburse you for the sign-up fee for Global Entry and TSA PreCheck. The sign-up process, however, can’t be done on the spot as it often is with CLEAR.
For more suggestions on ways to minimize stress at the holidays, check out TPG Family’s nine tips for better holiday travel.
Featured image by Issarawat Tattong/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