Ford Airport sees dip in Thanksgiving travel


CASCADE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — If the traffic through Gerald R. Ford International Airport is any indication, some of the typical Thanksgiving travelers are heeding warnings from local and national health officials by staying home.

“We’ve seen over the last couple of days, just shy of 3,000 people coming through the doors,” GRR Director of Commercial Development Stephen Clark told News 8 Wednesday. “Normal holiday for us would be anywhere between six and 7,000.”

Nationally, bookings in 2020 are down about 60% from where they were this time last year, according to the Associated Press.

While health professionals have tried to deter people from seeing friends and family outside their own household this holiday, the reality is some refuse to break tradition.

Others must travel for work or attend a college that has required students to leave campus for the holiday break.

To balance those circumstances with an urgent need to combat surging COVID-19 cases, researchers at Georgia Tech launched a risk assessment tool that provides real-time exposure chances based on event size across the country.

Additionally, the federal government launched as a resource for those who will travel this holiday season.

“Which kind of combined all of the resources from TSA, Homeland Security onto one website, so we encourage folks to go there as well as their airlines and then as you come to the airport, make sure you bring a mask,” Clark explained.

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