Travel is Up as More Americans Plan to Take a Trip This Thanksgiving

CHICAGO, Nov. 11, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) ­­ Airports will be busy over the Thanksgiving holiday with 61 percent of travelers planning to take a trip, up six percent from 2014. (1) Los Angeles International (LAX) and Chicago O’Hare (ORD) will be the busiest airports for the third consecutive year based on the Orbitz® Insider Index, which analyzed the® flight booking data of the top 50 U.S. airports over the Thanksgiving travel period (Nov. 25 – 30, 2015). Newcomers to this year’s busiest airport list are Denver International (DEN), Orlando International (MCO), Dallas­Fort Worth International (DFW), and Hartsfield­-Jackson Atlanta International (ATL).

“With travel expected to be up six percent, those heading to airports this Thanksgiving will need to build in extra time to account for bigger crowds and longer lines,” said Jeanenne Tornatore, senior editor of “As expected, Wednesday, Nov. 25 and Sunday, Nov. 29 will be the busiest of the weekend. Travelers looking to avoid the crowds should consider flying out on Thanksgiving day and coming back on Monday, Nov. 30, both the least busy of the holiday weekend.”

Orbitz also provides a list of the least busy airports. This year’s list is split down the middle with five airports making the list for the second year in a row and five newcomers. Travelers flying in to Eppley Airfield (OMA) in Omaha, Kahului Airport (OGG) in Maui or Mineta San Jose International (SJC) can expect minimal stress and shorter lines as they are the least busy for Thanksgiving weekend.


NOT­-TO­-MISS HIDDEN GEMS AT THE BUSIEST U.S. AIRPORTSIn the 2015 Orbitz holiday survey, most travelers said they were dreading the long lines and wait times at airports. However, nearly 55 percent indicated they would allow themselves more time at the airport if they knew of interesting things to see and do during the editors have rounded up hidden gems for travelers waiting in the busiest airports this Thanksgiving. For more hidden gems at busy U.S. airports visit the Orbitz blog.

Los Angeles International (LAX): LAX PUPS
Travelers passing through LAX and missing their pets at home should keep an eye out for LAX PUPS (Pets Un-stressing
Passengers). LAX’s therapy­-dog program provides relief to the stress of travel. These dog de­-stressors can be found at gates throughout the terminals and both dogs and handlers can easily be spotted by their red vests.

Chicago O’Hare International (ORD): Kids Zone and Staying ActiveFor those traveling with children, the Kids on the Fly interactive play area in Terminal 2 brings the airport to life with child­-sized model airplanes and a control tower that will keep the little ones busy for hours. For parents looking to stay active, consider purchasing day access to the Hilton Athletic Club inside the Hilton at Chicago O’Hare, accessible by underground walkway and the Airport Transit System.

San Francisco International (SFO): The Yoga RoomTo take relaxation to the next level, look no further than the Yoga Room in Terminal 2 at SFO. The room provides complimentary mats and pillows to allow travelers to unleash their inner chill instead of stressing about busy airports and holiday crowds. Travelers who are not yoga enthusiasts can take advantage of spa offerings in each of the terminals, just steps away from passenger boarding gates.(1) The Orbitz holiday survey was fielded by Orbitz from Sept. 21 – 23, 2015 via HawkPartners. 800 U.S. adults aged 18 and older who had who planned to travel over the holiday were surveyed.(2) Busiest airports data based on all air ticket bookings (standalone and as part of a package) to the top 50 airports with arrivals and departures between Nov. 25 – 30, 2015.(3) Least busy airports data based on all air ticket bookings (standalone and as part of a package) to the top 50 airports with arrivals and departures between Nov. 25 – 30, 2015.

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Rank Airport Name Location/Market Airport Code
1 Los Angeles International Los Angeles, Calif. LAX
2 Chicago O’Hare International Chicago, Ill. ORD
3 San Francisco International San Francisco, Calif. SFO
4 Denver International Denver, Colo. DEN
5 Boston Logan International Boston, Mass. BOS
6 John F. Kennedy International New York, N.Y. JFK
7 Orlando International Orlando, Fla. MCO
8 Newark Liberty International Newark, N.J. EWR
9 Dallas­-Fort Worth International Dallas, Texas DFW
10 Hartsfield­-Jackson Atlanta International Atlanta, Ga. ATL
Rank Airport Name Location/Market Airport Code
2 Kahului Airport Maui, Hawaii OGG
3 Mineta San Jose International San Jose, Calif. SJC
6 Nashville International Nashville, Tenn. BNA
7 General Mitchell International Milwaukee, Wis. MKE
9 Port Columbus International Columbus, Ohio CMH
10 Cincinnati­Northern Kentucky International Cincinnati, Ohio CVG