Holiday Travel Remaining Steady This Year
DULUTH, Minn. — “What we have found is that we continue to observe and watch and see what types of things need to be adjusted or changed but we’ve stayed pretty consistent around here,” Duluth Airport Authority Director of Communications & Marketing, Natalie Peterson says.
Air travel in Duluth is going steady heading into the holiday season with more than 50 million Americans planning on traveling this week for Thanksgiving.
The Duluth International Airport and the Landline bus service are seeing more people traveling for this Thanksgiving, with airlines currently operating at nearly full capacity.
“We’ve had a very strong year which is outstanding. Starting the first of the year numbers really started coming back,” Peterson says.
The holidays are always a strong time for the airlines this year, is no different.
“Our passenger loads are operating at over 90% for the holiday which is wonderful to see in many respects,” Peterson says.
On the ground, with Landline there’s the same trend.
“Versus a relative weekend it’s probably 15 to 20 percent higher which is normally as to what we would see on a typical holiday here,” Landline Co-Founder & CEO, David Sunde says.
With the transportation business taking a hit this past year because of the pandemic, founders of the landline bus company say they are happy traveling has picked up in 2021.
“It is good to see traveling coming back. Within the past couple of years during Covid, it’s been challenging for all transportation businesses. Certainly, we are seeing a very big bump in bookings during the holidays,” Sunde says.
In the air, the Duluth International Airport has been slightly affected by the United Airline staffing shortage but not as heavily as larger airports.
“It did impact this month because united dropped down to one flight per month for the month of November which is the lowest we’ve seen. Which is not due to passenger demand it’s due to crew shortage,” Peterson says.
Those flights from united will increase to two December 4th.
Another bonus for travelers, flights to Arizona and Florida on Sun Country will begin in mid-December.