Holiday travel strong ahead of Thanksgiving weekend

Published: Nov. 23, 2022 at 5:31 PM CST
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PEORIA (25 News Now) - Transportation officials expect high travel numbers this holiday weekend.

AAA says Wednesday and Sunday are two of the most popular travel days of the year.

At Peoria International Airport, leaders are planning for more than 13,000 people to travel through the terminal. Airport Director Gene Olson says his best travel tip is to get to the airport early, even if traveling through a smaller airport like PIA.

“Peoria thinks you can just come in 15 minutes before the flight and still make it,” Olson said. “That is not gonna happen.”

Olson says travel numbers this year are about 90 percent of pre-pandemic levels. It’s a trend following suit on the train tracks as well.

“Our [Amtrak] routes are very busy the Wednesday before Thanksgiving and even busier the Sunday after,” Amtrak spokesperson Marc Magliari said.

Amtrak says its busiest downstate Illinois station is in Bloomington-Normal, with several trains going through the station daily on the way from Chicago to St. Louis and vice versa.

“Always check, whether it’s an airplane or a train, how your plane or train is doing before you go to the station or to the terminals,” Magliari said.

Olson says to keep your car safe by locking it if you are leaving it in an airport parking lot while you travel.

“Try to park in an area that’s well-lit, and you might look up at the poles and park near a pole, that has a camera.”

On the roads, they advise drivers to buckle up and drive defensively.