Ford Airport travel numbers approach pre-pandemic levels

Kent County

CASCADE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Students are either already on spring break or will be for the next week.

More people are traveling right now than we’ve seen since the start of the pandemic. Travel numbers out of the Gerald R. Ford International Airport are nearly back to pre-pandemic levels right now.

Management says they are at about 90% of what they were before restrictions went into place in March 2020. The airport is expecting to see about 60,000 people travel through it in the next 10 days with Friday being the busiest.

With so many folks on the move, airport officials are doing what it can to make sure guests are safe.

There is even a testing site on the grounds from 4 a.m. until 8 p.m. every day.

If you are planning to fly, they recommend you show up two hours before your flight and to know the rules and regulations for wherever you are going.

Those lower ticket prices we have grown used to may be coming to an end with so many more people traveling.

“Airlines are definitely responsible for their pricing but they respond to demand,” said Stephen Clark, director of commercial development. “West Michigan has always very traditionally recovered faster than the rest of the nation. In fact, we’re seeing it again in this current environment where we are 10% to 15% points above the national average.”

Ford Airport finished 2020 at half the number of travelers it normally sees. By the end of this year, it is hoping to get closer to 70%.

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