Thanksgiving flights on track to exceed pre-pandemic levels

Travel could be greatly hampered by TSA shortages this year.
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Chicago O'Hare airport
Chicago O'Hare airport
(Tim Boyle / Getty Images)

Projected travel for the Thanksgiving holiday appears likely to exceed pre-pandemic levels, marking renewed traveler confidence amid the still-ongoing COVID crisis.

Data from Adobe Digital Insights indicated that bookings for Thanksgiving flights "are up 78 percent from last year and 3.2 percent from 2019," the Hill reported this week

Travel in September and October was lower than the prior year, but declining COVID cases throughout those months appear to have helped bookings rebound considerably. 

Yet travel on Thanksgiving could be ensnared in the potential chaos of Transportation Security Administration shortages, with a sizeable percentage of TSA employees reportedly facing suspension due to noncompliance with the federal vaccine mandate. 

Historically, Thanksgiving has been the busiest travel day in the United States, exceeding other notable holidays including Christmas and July 4th.