Thanksgiving brings travel boost for airlines

Expect a full plane this holiday season

Fliers heading home this holiday season might find their flight provider to be a bit more crowded than expected, as the Air Transportation Association (ATA) is predicting that Thanksgiving flights will surge up 11.4 percent over last year's holiday weekend.

The ATA is anticipating more than 40 million Americans taking to the sky to travel more than 50 miles, despite reports that the average airfare may be 20 to 30 percent higher than it has been during the same period in 2009. The reason for the growth, according to, is the slowly rebounding economy which has allowed families and individuals more leeway to travel during this busy season.

Pouncing on this opportunity, a number of airlines have already begun to offer seasonal sales in an attempt to capture a percentage of the 1.62 million travelers seeking to head home during the five-day stretch from Wednesday, November 24 to Sunday November 28th.

Fliers can avoid the crowds by choosing less traveled days in the middle of the week, or by leaving earlier in the morning when flights and airports are typically more sparsely populated.

By Jason Faulkner

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