Thanksgiving myth: It's the worst travel day

Tacoma News TribuneNovember 22, 2011 

Thanksgiving myth: The November holiday is consistently the worst time of the year for travel. Thanksgiving truth: It’s reputation is worse than the reality.

A closer look at the facts show that while traveling during the next five days isn’t a garden stroll, other times of year are much worse.

n Consider the widely held belief that the Wednesday before Thanksgiving or the Sunday after is the heaviest air travel day of the year.

It just isn’t so, at least at Sea-Tac Airport, says Sea-Tac spokesman Perry Cooper.

The busiest day of the coming holiday period is expected to be Sunday when the airport expects 89,250 passengers to use the airport’s ticket counters and gates. That’s nearly 11,000 passenger shy of just an average summer day at the airport. On the busiest summer days at Sea-Tac when business, cruise and vacation travel hit simultaneous peaks, traffic is nearly 22,000 passengers greater than the Sunday after Thanksgiving and nearly 23,000 more than the Wednesday before Thanksgiving.

And Thanksgiving travel this year at Sea-Tac isn’t increasing over 2010. Airlines expect total passenger numbers to be flat this year compared with a year ago.

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