Traveling for holiday? 1.3M passengers to travel through Atlanta airport

As of late Wednesday evening, the average wait time at all the TSA checkpoints was only about 15 minutes.

ATLANTA — Wednesday is expected to be the peak travel day for the Thanksgiving holiday.

A total of 1.3 million people are expected to pass through Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport this week.

Channel 2 Action News has been monitoring the lines at the airport all day. Channel 2's Steve Gehlbach found long lines stretching past the atrium of the airport and wrapping around to the luggage claim Wednesday morning.

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At that point, all three TSA checkpoints averaged a 15-30 minute wait.

In the afternoon, Channel 2's Justin Wilfon went back to Hartsfield-Jackson, where he found the TSA line much lighter and few delays on the departure boards.

“I haven’t seen any lines, believe it or not. I’m flying Southwest. I haven’t had any issues getting through, so no complaints as of yet,” traveler Nick Peebles said.

Wilfon spoke with an airport official who confirmed there have not been any major travel problems at the airport throughout the day Wednesday, despite winter storms in the Midwest.


“Today is going really well. We’ve had pretty heavy loads today. But we’re really gearing up for Sunday, which is going to be near our peak levels,” said Matt Sparks, vice president for Atlanta airport operation for Delta Air Lines.

Sparks said Delta will have more than 2,000 flights in and out of Hartsfield-Jackson on Sunday.

As of late Wednesday evening, the average wait time at all the TSA checkpoints was only about 15 minutes.

For those people hitting the road, most drivers saw a slower go than normal during the Wednesday evening rush hour.

Interstates and surface streets have been slower than usual all afternoon, according to GDOT.

Triple Team Traffic’s Mark Arum said most of the heaviest delays were south of the city in Henry County along Interstate 75.

The traffic wasn’t expected to ease up until after 7 p.m., Triple Team Traffic said.

While the roads are expected to remain busy, motorists won’t have to contend with roadwork this weekend.

GDOT has suspended all lane closures until 5 a.m. Monday to help alleviate Thanksgiving holiday congestion.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution contributed to this article.