MIAMI (CBSMiami) — The Thanksgiving holiday is a big one at South Florida airports.
Both Miami International and Fort Lauderdale Hollywood are seeing big crowds. The worst days for air travel are Wednesday and Sunday. The best is Thanksgiving Day.
Miami expects 130,000 people per day on their peak days and Fort Lauderdale is looking at 122,000 on their heavy days.
“We had to pick the boys up early from school and then we’re at the airport 2 hours early so we can eat lunch and not miss our flight,” said traveler Sara Lazar.
The Lazar family is going to Chicago for Thanksgiving. They got to the airport well in advance of their flight, just like they were supposed to.
“We’re traveling to Cancun, Mexico for Thanksgiving, we’re going to first tradition internationally,” said Javett Love.
The Love family arrived early too, leaving little to chance.
“We live in Central Florida, so we woke up early this morning, traveled down, got here early so we could check in. Our flight leaves in a couple of hours,” Javett added.
Another reason for arriving early is traffic at the airport.
This will be a record breaker at Fort Lauderdale Hollywood, so expect a lot of cars and think about parking.
“I just made sure we were up early, that we actually used Lyft to get here. In the past, it’s been really hard parking, so I save a lot of time doing that,” said traveler Sara Miller.
Planning on hitting the road?
About 48.5 million people are expected to drive this year, that’s up about 5 percent from last year. Two and a half million of them will be on Florida roads, like the Hawkins family going from the Keys to Orlando.
“How’s the drive been so far? It’s been nice, not too bad. The roads are pretty clear, better than I thought it was going to be,” traveler Tim Hawkins said.
Even through Miami? “Even through Miami,” he adds.
The roads will be most congested Tuesday and Wednesday, with Sunday being the worst.
Experts suggest you travel early in the morning or late at night to avoid the rush hour. The key is planning.
“We’re not worried, we’re just taking our time. Everyone rushes, everyone needs to slow down a litte and chill out,” said Lindsay McCormick.