New Pandemic Record: Nearly One Million Passengers Pass Through U.S. Airports
Did you know that the total number of travelers flying in the U.S. since March 17 has reached 900,000? Yes, this is what the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has reported. And just after Labor Day, the total number of flyers became 968,673 throughout the United States starting September 4th.
This number may still be below the 2.1 million passengers who traveled last year at the same timeframe, but more and more people are still flying in and out of the country even if the risk of contracting the virus is very high.
In addition to this post-pandemic traveler peak, the air transportation industry also realized that there are days where the passenger count reached 800,000. These peaks occurred on:
- August 30 (Sunday) with 807,965, which is the first day of the week
- September 3 (Thursday) with 877,698 travelers
These aren’t just the times where the 800,000 count was surpassed, though. Starting August 9, the value started to increase further.
Passenger count ranged between 500,00 to 800,000 as for the rest of the week. The lowest number of passengers came on Tuesday, which only has 516,068. The travelers on Thursday, Friday, and Sunday, on the other hand, reached more than 700,000 per day.
This peak is expected to continue throughout the Labor Day weekend. On Saturday, the traffic lapsed back to a total of 664,640 passengers, which is a slightly dramatic percentile drop compared to the previous year.
TSA Administrator, David Pekoske, emphasized patience in the new airport guidelines and Coronavirus environment aas returning travelers continue to rise and fill up aircraft seats. Here’s exactly what he said:
“for travelers who have not flown since the beginning of the pandemic, the TSA checkpoint experience will be noticeably different as compared to Labor Day last year. Passengers also play an important role in helping us ensure they safely and efficiently get through security screening at our airports while wearing masks and respecting social distancing.”
As airlines continue to expand and regain their existing services, the number of passengers continues to rise as well. Earlier this week, Southwest Airlines announced that the first flights to California, Miami, and Palm Springs are expected to be available online after the next few months.
Delta Airlines, on the other hand, has bucked the trend and said that they will not lay off their flight attendants in 2020 because travel demand continues to rise. The airline announced it despite the rough October that is expected for airline personnel. Delta also praised buyouts and flexibility of its employees for postponing absences and leaves.
On the contrary, United Airlines will restore some of its flight schedules in October to help meet the rising travel demand.