SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4) – Hanukkah is here, and we’re less than a week away from Christmas, which means a lot of people may be heading home to see family. Officials at the Salt Lake City International Airport said the busiest days for the season are expected to be Thursday, Dec. 22, Friday, Dec. 23, and Monday, Dec. 26, with 30,000 passengers on each of those days.

Already at the airport Monday morning, passengers were lining up, excited to spend time with loved ones for the holidays. “I’m really excited to see my family, more than anything. Haven’t seen them for a couple of months,” said John Mcconkie, who was going back home to Virginia.

One passenger said he’s thrilled to soon be trading the winter snow for Florida beaches. “In Florida, I’m seeing lots of family. We got family coming in from all over down there to actually spend time with us since we’ll be down there,” said Alex Stevens.

But, with the travel comes long lines, and the hustle and bustle of the airport during one of the busiest times of the year. “We were a little bit worried — it’s the holidays, just lots of people traveling, having long lines and everything,” said Mcconkie.

Dezaree Porter, who just spent three weeks in Utah celebrating Christmas with family ahead of time, was waiting for her flight back to Texas this morning. “It’s already getting really busy,” she commented.

Many travellers today were trying to do what they could to beat the traffic. “We got here three hours before,” said Stevens, while Porter said, “We took an earlier flight because we didn’t want any delays.”

But, even though travel can be a headache, many passengers today shared it’s definitely worth it in the end.

“It’s the greatest time of year, it’s the greatest. People are nicer, kinder, and families, being with family is the best,” shared MaryAnn Mcconkie, who was traveling with her grandson.

To help ensure a smooth travel experience, SLC provided a few reminders:

  • Check airlines’ websites or apps prior to leaving for the airport to ensure flights are on-time and have not been delayed due to weather.
  • Check in online through airlines’ websites or apps prior to leaving for SLC to expedite the process at the airport.
  • Arrive two hours prior to the flight boarding time for domestic flights and three hours for international flights.
  • Reserve airport parking in advance. A number of parking options and rates are available.
  • Plan ahead, and review what the TSA allows to be packed in carry-on and checked luggage.
  • Utilize the Park and Wait lot to wait for passengers until they are curbside and ready to be picked up.