AAA: 109 million will travel on vacation this year, air travel up 184%

BUFFALO, NY (WIVB) – AAA estimates 109 million people will travel for Christmas and New Years this year.

That’s close to pre-pandemic levels of around 92% of 2019 figures.

Air travel is up 184% from last year, according to AAA.

Public relations manager Elizabeth Carey said seats were still available for last-minute travelers, but at a steep price.

“People started picking them up earlier and that’s what we usually see, there is higher demand during the holidays which means you have to plan ahead to get the best price,” he said. she declared.

NFTA Aviation Director William Vanecek said there are things travelers can do to make the airport experience smoother.

“I think the biggest thing we can do to help TSA do their job efficiently is to get you to the airport in sufficient time, we now have a lot more queue space. available at the checkpoint, “he said.

Travelers are also encouraged to check the TSA website or app in advance to confirm what they can and cannot bring on the plane.

Masks are mandatory in all areas of the airport and on airplanes.

Carey said domestic travel is popular right now due to the negative test requirement to return to the United States from many international destinations.

But that doesn’t stop everyone, including George Conboy who plans to fly to Italy for Christmas.

He will have to be tested for COVID 72 hours in advance and present proof of vaccination. To return, he will need a test 24 hours before leaving Italy.

“We were there no more than in October and were able to find a pharmacy in a nearby town that will take the test and give you the results there. What we learned is that when you are abroad , especially if there is a language barrier, get your results on a piece of paper so that if necessary you can show them to the airlines, ”said Conboy.

That being said, AAA has said the majority of vacationers will drive. It’s cheaper, especially for large families, and it allows for some flexibility.

Kayla Green is a journalist who has been part of the News 4 team since 2021. See more of her work here.

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