Be prepared, bring patience to airports during Thanksgiving


CASCADE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Combine traveling with the holidays and things can get stressful very quickly. It’s something millions of travelers are going to experience over the next few days as one of the busiest travel weekends of the year ramps up.

Nov. 23-27 marks one of the most busy travel times of the year. At the Gerald R. Ford International Airport it’s no exception.

“There are a lot of first time travelers, so being prepared is the number one thing. Get to the airport early, we recommend at least 90 minutes before your flight. Being prepared from the sense of what you can and cannot bring. A lot of the Thanksgiving travelers are the once a year travelers and may not be familiar with the TSA rules,” said Tara Hernandez, the communications and marketing director at the Ford Airport.

Keeping only items in your checked bagged that are TSA approved helps to keep lines moving. It can sometimes be overwhelming trying to keep track of what can and cannot fly, so TSA has tried to make it easy for you with a searchable database at

“You can type in jams and jellies that still kind of fits in the categorization of liquid so you can’t bring those in your carry-on luggage,” said Hernandez

AAA of Michigan says 1.5 million people in Michigan plan to travel this weekend which is up 2 percent from last year.

While 90 percent of those are driving, airports are still expecting to see a big increase as well. At the Ford Airport they typically see 7,000 travelers a day. This weekend those numbers jump by hundreds of added travelers a day. Ford Airport officials are reminding people to be patient, especially with the ongoing construction.

“By next year during Thanksgiving it’s going to be incredible to have seven security screenings lines all in one rather than the two separate, but right now it’s a little tough — we’re kind of in some tight spaces with traffic. Even if you perceive that it might be a long wait it’s probably not that bad, it’s just the way it looks with construction,” Hernandez said.

—————Online:Flight information at Gerald R. Ford International AirportFlight information at Kalamazoo/Battle Creek International AirportTSA Thanksgiving travel tips

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