Millions expected to travel for Thanksgiving holiday – here’s a look at the numbers

Holiday travel is underway

Holiday travel is underway


CHICAGO (CBS) – With Thanksgiving this week, roads and airports are expected to be the busiest we’ve seen in years.

As CBS 2’s Asal Rezaei reported, big numbers are already being projected for this week.

You’ll see some people try to get ahead of things and get out of town early but we’re expecting the travel volume at airports to pick up by Tuesday.

The Chicago Department of Aviation says they’re prepared to welcome more than 1.6 million passengers at Chicago airports.

O’Hare expected to see a 1.5 percent passenger increase this year.

Airline projections show Sunday will be the busiest travel day with more than 226,000 passengers going through O’Hare and almost 60,000 passengers expected through midway, and that’s just Sunday.

Midway seeing a one percent increase as far as passengers go this year compared to last. Nationally we’re seeing a six percent increase in air travel.

Some travelers have decided to get going earlier to not only avoid crowds but also score a cheaper flight.

“We’re doing Monday travel cause a little less crowded and a little cheaper flight,” Erin said.

 “I was worried if I came Wednesday, it would be extremely busy, so I thought I might as well push it back a couple days,” said Taylor Fingerhut.

AAA projects more than 55 million people will hit the road.

They say most travelers, about 89 percent, are traveling by car this week.

If you’re going to be one of these people, it’s best to give yourself lots of extra time.

Weather going to be a factor here in Chicago and along the East Coast.

Travel experts say the best time to travel this week will be Wednesday and Sunday morning.