HOUSTON - It isn’t just the weekend, it’s the weekend before Thanksgiving, and traveling for the holiday has already started. The biggest thing to remember is millions will be flying in and out of Houston airports, while millions more will hit the road.
So whether you’re driving or flying this Thanksgiving holiday you will not be alone.
Airline passengers are taking to the skies in larger numbers and leaving earlier this Thanksgiving season, with many who began traveling on Thursday, one week before the holiday.
"We’re really excited, and we’re ready to receive approximately 2.3 million people through Bush Airport and Hobby Airport during this 13-day holiday period," says Augusto Bernal with the Houston Airport System.
Another 3.6 million turkey day travelers, according to AAA, will drive 50 miles or more with most people packing highways the day before Thanksgiving. So if you’re flexible, the day and time of day you leave matters. "The least congested time typically is in the morning, before the morning commute," Joshua Zuber with AAA Texas explains.
Travelers this Thanksgiving could reach pre-pandemic numbers. "We expect we’re going to surpass 2019 levels for the extended holiday period," adds Bernal.
If you’re driving and want to map out the best gas prices along the way, "You can use a website like the AAA TripTik website. You can plan out your stops along the way, and you can see the price for gasoline along your route as well to help you plan out your budget," Zuber explains.
Because cancelation and change policies were modified a lot during the pandemic you certainly want to check with your hotel, airline, cruise ship carrier, or bus line for updated policies.
THANKSGIVING TRAVEL: AAA: Thanksgiving travel to nearly hit pre-pandemic levels
Plus, if you want to make your flight, Bernal says to arrive early. "If you can come 3 hours before your flight please do because you’re going to have to navigate longer lines at the check-in counters and longer lines at TSA security checkpoints".
Also, if you're flying and parking at the airport reserve a parking spot online before you leave home. That guarantees a spot and is usually less expensive.
Click here to help you find the best gas prices for your road trip.