The busy summer travel season is here and the Springfield airport encourages flyers to arrive at the airport at least two hours before their flight’s scheduled leave time.
The airline lobbying organization, Airlines for America, expects more than 257 million passengers will travel on U.S. airlines between June 1 and the end of August. It’s part of a continuing trend of robust growth in the airline business — in Springfield, for example, passenger numbers have grown 43% over the past five years. The end result is two-fold:
- Airport parking lots are near capacity. It often takes longer to find a parking spot (the airport will expand the lots in the near future).
- Wait times in lines have increased substantially; especially at the security check point and airline ticket counters. The long waits sometimes result in missed flights
Here are some ways to avoid missing your flight —
- First and foremost: arrive at the airport at least two hours before your flight is scheduled to leave.
Speed up the line at the security checkpoint by doing the following:
- Have your ID out and ready to show to screening personnel.
- Take all food out of your carry-on bags and place it in the conveyor bins. All food must be visually inspected by screening personnel.
- Take all electronic devices (phones, computers, tablets, etc.) and place them in the conveyor bins. They must be visually inspected.
Other ways to speed things up:
- Avoid the line at the airline ticket counter. Unless you have to check a bag, you can bypass the ticket counter completely by checking into your flight on your airline’s website, or mobile phone app
- Avoid departing during very busy times. Typically, the busiest times of day are in the morning; between 5:30 and 7:00, and between 10:30 and 12:30. The busiest days of the week are Wednesday and Saturday.
Apply for TSA PreCheck from the Transportation Security Administration. Flyers that are PreCheck approved do not need to remove shoes, laptops, liquids, belts and light jackets when going through the security checkpoint. More information here: https://www.tsa.gov/precheck
Bottom line: the summer travel season is here and long lines will be common. Don’t miss your flight; arrive at the airport at least two hours before your flight is scheduled to leave!