Millions of Americans Are Flying for Thanksgiving Despite Rising Cases and Pleas from the CDC

NBC DFW

When the coronavirus pandemic first started, we thought it would be over by summer. Then, we hoped it would be over by the time school started in the fall. Now, we find ourselves waiting for a vaccine and canceling holiday plans.

Not everyone is following CDC guidelines when it comes to celebrating the holidays. With Thanksgiving just days away, airports were crowded with passengers boarding planes to fly home for the celebration.

Last week, the CDC announced guidelines strongly recommending that Americans don’t travel for Thanksgiving. According to the latest guidelines, the safest way to celebrate is at home with members of your household using an online app like Zoom to celebrate with friends and extended family.

Many people bought airline tickets for their turkey day travel plans long before the new CDC guidelines regarding the holiday, but John Breyault of the National Consumers League doesn’t think that should be an excuse to travel during the pandemic. According to NBC DFW, he said, “Consumers should feel comfortable changing their plans and canceling their flights if they need to for health reasons.”

Many airlines have loosened their cancellation policies due to the pandemic. While you may not be able to get your money back, you would most likely be able to get a voucher for a flight in the future when it’s safer to travel.

Just how many people are traveling for Thanksgiving? U.S. airports screened 1,047,934 passengers on Sunday alone. According to the Transportation Security Administration, this is the largest number of passengers that have traveled through U.S. airports on any single day since March 16, 2020.

Over the entire pre-holiday weekend, more than 3 million people passed through U.S. airport security. That number doesn’t even take into consideration the millions of Americans who will be traveling via car. Thanksgiving is still several days away, so we can only imagine that millions more Americans have yet to travel.

For more about how Americans are traveling for Thanksgiving, and to get a glimpse inside these crowded airports, watch the video below.

If you are traveling for Thanksgiving despite CDC guidelines, you can try to stay as safe as possible by holding the gathering outside, bringing your own food, wearing a face mask and practicing social distancing.

How will you be celebrating Thanksgiving this year? Are you traveling for the holiday or celebrating at home?