Economy

Holiday travel season expected to break records

Airlines are poised to recoup at least some losses during what A4A forecasts will be the busiest year for Thanksgiving travel since at least 2005, with a 3 percent increase from 2016 to 28.5 million passengers over the 12-day period.

If you're one of the many people who finds themselves traveling for Thanksgiving, you know that airports often turn into chaotic nightmares around the holiday. It landed on November 2 as the best date to book air travel for Thanksgiving and "score the best deals". Data revealed that travelers are more likely to arrive on time if they wait until Wednesday.

RewardExpert analyzed flight data from the past five years to figure out which days are the best and worst to travel this Thanksgiving.

As back-up options, Shteyn advises travelers to consider either the Monday or Saturday preceding Thanksgiving.

-The Tuesday before turkey day is the second-worst day of flying. He says you want to avoid traveling on the Sunday or Tuesday before Thanksgiving. But in densely populated areas, there may be more than one within easy reach.

Last year, the Monday after Thanksgiving was the worst day to fly back. In that case, knowing which airports have the best on-time records can be useful information. Over the past five years, an average of 84.9% of all flights on Thanksgiving Eve have been on-time. In the Northeast, Newark and LaGuardia also rank at the bottom of the list. Both reported slightly more delays previous year but remained the best at on-time performance overall.

-Rounding out the top five performing airlines in order is Delta, Alaska, United, and American, all of which have on-time rates above 80 percent. Over the past five years, 91.5 percent of all flights were on time.

While airlines make the bulk of their profits over the summer, the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays are also key periods for the industry, which is enjoying a long boom.



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