(Trends Wide) — As the Thanksgiving travel period begins, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) announced that this Friday it screened more than two million travelers at airports in the United States, the volume highest for a single day since the pandemic began.
“Breaking: TSA officials screened 2,242,956 people at airport security checkpoints across the country yesterday, Friday, Nov. 19. It’s the highest checkpoint volume since passenger volume collapsed in early 2020 as a result of the pandemic ”, tweeted the TSA spokeswoman, Lisa Farbstein, on Saturday. “Thanksgiving travel period has begun! #MaskUp “
The 2.2 million travelers screened on Friday are still slightly below the more than 2.5 million screened on the same day in 2019.
Earlier this week, TSA administrator David Pekoske told Trends Wide’s Pete Muntean that he hoped the number of people flying for Thanksgiving would “certainly” break the air travel records for the United States. It was from the pandemic, adding that “the pandemic record at the moment is about 2.2 million people, and I would hope that we will definitely get over it.”
The agency expects to screen more than 20 million people at airport security checkpoints across the country during a 10-day period that began yesterday and ends on the Sunday after Thanksgiving, which is expected to be the busiest day.
“I wouldn’t say there is any concern because we planned this months in advance,” Pekoske told Trends Wide. “We have a lot of data, we work very closely with carriers and airports, so we know what to expect and then we staff the volumes that we expect to see.”
The TSA anticipates that the Sunday after Thanksgiving will likely see the highest numbers thanks to the flood of travelers returning home, but the all-time record set on the same day in 2019 when 2.9 million will likely not be reached. people were screened at airports.
United Airlines said it expects to serve more than 4.5 million people during the Thanksgiving travel period, with 450,000 flying the Sunday after Thanksgiving alone. United says the projections are 88% for the same period in 2019, before the pandemic.
Trends Wide’s Pete Muntean contributed to this report.