There are roughly 315 million people in the United States. Some are too sick to fly. Some live too far from airports for flying to be practical. However, that leaves enough people so 27.3 million of them will be airline passengers over Thanksgiving week, which is for some reasons 12 days. The number should not tax the air travel system more than usual. It is up only 2.5% from last year.
Some analysts would argue that the number of people who travel over a holiday weekend is a sign of consumer spending strength. An increase of 2.5% is not very much. And it could be driven by ticket prices or some other factor non-airline people don’t think of.
According to Airlines for America:
Highly affordable airfare is driving that increase, and airlines are ready for more holiday travelers, adding 74,000 seats each day through larger planes and additional flights.
A4A expects U.S. airlines will carry an average of 2.27 million passengers per day over the 12-day period, which extends from Friday, Nov. 18 through Tuesday, Nov. 29.
Daily passenger volumes will range from 1.51 million to 2.81 million, with the busiest travel days in ranked order expected to be Sunday, Nov. 27; Monday, Nov. 28; and Wednesday, Nov. 23. The lightest travel day is expected to be Thanksgiving Day – Thursday, Nov. 24.
So, the heaviest travel day is when people need to go back home.