Travelers flock to Chicago for Memorial Day weekend

Air travelers at O’Hare International Airport are getting a head start on the Memorial Day weekend, with many arriving on redeye flights early Friday morning while others begin their extended weekend plans.

This year, Chicago is not just a departure city but also a prime destination for holiday revelers.

Airlines have added extra flights to accommodate the surge in demand for the Memorial Day travel period, which extends through Tuesday. American Airlines anticipates this holiday travel period to be the busiest in its history.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) reports that agents have screened more than 2.8 million individuals at checkpoints across the country, the second-highest number on record. Both O’Hare and Midway airports are expecting significantly more passengers than last year and even pre-pandemic levels, reflecting a strong rebound in travel.

The influx of travelers has led to bustling scenes at Chicago's airports, with people both arriving and departing. Travel experts advise that managing time efficiently is crucial to reducing travel stress, urging passengers to allow for extra time to reach the airport amid the busy road conditions expected on Friday.

With road travel peaking, now is not the time to cut it close. Extra preparation can make a significant difference during this particularly hectic travel period.