Nov 11 2013

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Top 10 busiest airports this Thanksgiving

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Chicago O'Hare International Airport

 

Travelers to the Midwest and West Coast of the U.S. will see the largest crowds of any U.S. airport this Thanksgiving, according to new data from Orbitz.  Los Angeles International (LAX) and Chicago O’Hare International (ORD) airports took top billings as the busiest destinations, based on the Orbitz Insider Index, which analyzed booking data from the top-50 U.S. airports over the Thanksgiving travel period (Nov. 26 – Dec. 2, 2013).  Additionally, the Index used booking data to find the least busy airport options, based on the same period.

“This year, we’ve seen an increase in traffic at traditionally slower airports, with several new airports joining the Busiest Airports list,” said Jeanenne Tornatore, senior travel editor for Orbitz.com. “When traveling for the holidays this year, jet-setters should prepare for crowds and pack accordingly, with options to keep themselves entertained should there be delays. The recent FAA approval on using electronic devices during take-off and landing is another bright spot to look forward to when traveling this holiday season.”

Most/Least Busy Airports

Los Angeles International (LAX) and Chicago’s O’Hare (ORD) airports have taken the top seeds in Orbitz busiest airports rankings and 2013 marks the fourth straight year that they will see the largest crowds over the holiday.

There were several shake-ups this year, with traditionally less busy airports seeing increases in traveler traffic. Boston’s Logan International airport rose two spots to number 3, while Washington’s Ronald Reagan National Airport also climbed several spots to take the title as the nation’s 6th busiest airport.

New to the busiest airports list are Seattle’s Seattle-Tacoma International, Newark Liberty International and Minneapolis-St. Paul International airports.

 

Orbitz Insider Index: Busiest Airports for Thanksgiving 2013

2013 Rank

Airport Name

Location/Market

Airport Code

2012 Rank

1

 Los Angeles International  Los Angeles, CA

LAX

2

2

 Chicago O’Hare International  Chicago, IL

ORD

1

3

 Boston Logan International  Boston, MA

BOS

5

4

 San Francisco International  San Francisco, CA

SFO

3

5

 New York LaGuardia  New York, NY

LGA

4

6

 Ronald Reagan National  Airport  Washington, D.C.

DCA

9

7

 Sea-Tac International  Seattle, WA

SEA

N/A

8

 Denver International  Denver, CO

DEN

8

9

 Newark Liberty International  Newark, NJ

EWR

N/A

10

 Minneapolis-St. Paul International  Minneapolis, MN

MSP

N/A

 

While many travelers this season will see more passengers in their terminals at major airports, several airports have indicated that their security lines will be shorter.  In 2013, five new airports made the Least Busy list, offering several new options for travelers looking to avoid the crowds.

 

Orbitz Insider Index: Least Busy Airports for Thanksgiving 2013

2013 Rank

Airport Name

Location/Market

Airport Code

2012 Rank

1

 Syracuse Hancock International  Syracuse, NY

SYR

N/A

2

 Buffalo Niagara International  Buffalo, NY

BUF

1

3

 Bangor International  Bangor, ME

BGR

N/A

4

 Nashville International  Nashville, TN

BNA

3

5

 Eppley Airfield  Omaha, NE

OMA

N/A

6

 Sacramento International  Sacramento, CA

SMF

4

7

 Richmond International  Richmond, VA

RIC

N/A

8

 Cleveland Hopkins International  Cleveland, OH

CLE

7

9

 Port Columbus International  Columbus, OH

CMH

N/A

10

 John Wayne Airport  Orange County, CA

SNA

8

 

Hot Tips for Holiday Travel

Peak travel periods: As part of the Insider Index, Orbitz also analyzed the busiest travel days.  Similar to years before, traveling on the Wednesday before the holiday will be the most expensive day to travel with airfares on average around $499. For jet-setters on a budget, Orbitz experts suggest traveling on Thanksgiving Day when airfares average $406 – a savings of 19 percent.

Know your alternatives: Flying from smaller airports with low-cost carriers is not always the least expensive option for travelers. For example, a round-trip ticket over Thanksgiving weekend from Chicago to Atlanta cost $XX less from Chicago O’Hare International (ORD) than the smaller Chicago Midway International (MDW). Travelers should always check all airport options. Orbitz customers can use the “Nearby Airports” feature to search all airports within 80 miles of their departure and arrival destination.

Dress for success: Remember, TSA allows children 12 years old and younger to leave their shoes on when going through airport security—a time-saver for traveling parents. Be sure to have your children keep their shoes laced-up when waiting in the security line and save yourself from unnecessary wardrobe changes.

Smartphones are your travel companions: From navigating to the airport, checking flight statuses and even keeping your reservations in order, mobile devices are your best friend when traveling through the holidays.  The Orbitz App now integrates with Orbitz Rewards, and with the new “Zap that Bag Fee” feature, customers can easily take a picture of their checked baggage fee receipt, send it to Orbitz and earn $25 in bonus Orbucks through November 30.

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Posted on: November 11, 2013 | Tags: , , | Category: Holidays & EventsCategory: Orbitz Travel InsiderCategory: Top 10 ListsCategory: Travel Tips

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