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May 21, 2014 at 3:20 PM

Dealing with holiday-travel crowds at Sea-Tac Airport

Be ready for crowds at Sea-Tac Airport and other U.S. airports on the Memorial Day weekend. (Seattle Times file photo / Elaine Thompson)

Be ready for crowds at Sea-Tac Airport and other U.S. airports on the Memorial Day weekend. (Seattle Times file photo / Elaine Thompson)

The Memorial Day weekend kicks off the summer travel season.  Here’s what you can expect if you’re flying out of Sea-Tac Airport this holiday weekend:

Friday will be the busiest day at the airport, with more than 100,000 passengers expected to go through the airport, says the Port of Seattle. (That’s a fairly typical number for summer days, particularly in August which is the busiest month of the year).  Sunday will be the most peaceful day at Sea-Tac, with an estimated 70,000 passengers.

Some tips to make your flight go more smoothly:

-Double-check your flight’s status before going to the airport. Sign up for email or text alerts about your flight from your airline.

-Print out you boarding pass in advance – or get it at the self-service kiosks in the airport garage or by check-in counters.

-Get to the airport at least two hours early for domestic flights. Leave more time for international flights.

– Look for the least busy security line; you can get to all  Sea-Tac departure gates from any of them. Know the TSA rules on what you can, and can’t, have in your carry-on luggage.

– Go opposite on the airport drives when dropping off or picking up travelers if there’s lots of traffic congestion. The busiest periods are mornings for departures and evenings for arrivals. So of the departure drive is jammed, drop off travelers on the arrivals level.  And pick up travelers on the departures level.

– Use the cell phone waiting lot when waiting for arriving passengers.  Sea-Tac has recently expanded the lot.

 

Comments | Topics: airport travel tips, Memorial Day travel

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