Stats: Sunday After Thanksgiving the Worst Day to Fly

Top down view of a Thanksgiving dinner on a table
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The TSA predicts that this year, 25 million people will travel in the U.S. for the Thanksgiving holiday - a 7 percent increase since last year and the busiest travel season on record at some major airports.

When looking at travel patterns from last year, AirHelp found that more than 153,000 flights departed from U.S. airports between the Tuesday before Thanksgiving (November 21, 2017) and the Monday following the holiday (November 27, 2017). Below is more data from last year's Thanksgiving travel period, which can help inform travelers about what to expect this year, especially as tourism grows:

  • More than 153,000 flights departed from U.S. airports for Thanksgiving last year
  • The Sunday after Thanksgiving is the worst day to fly, as airports will be the most crowded
  • Flights taking off between 6:00am - 11:59am experience the fewest disruptions

Most Popular Flight Routes

  1. Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) → San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
  2. San Francisco International Airport (SFO) → Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)
  3. New York LaGuardia Airport (LGA) → Chicago O'Hare International Airport (ORD)
  4. Chicago O'Hare International Airport (ORD) → New York LaGuardia Airport (LGA)
  5. Kahului Airport (OGG) → Honolulu International Airport (HNL)
  6. Honolulu International Airport (HNL) → Kahului Airport (OGG)
  7. New York John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) → Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)
  8. Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) → New York John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK)
  9. Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) → Las Vegas McCarran International Airport (LAS)
  10. Las Vegas McCarran International Airport (LAS) → Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

Most Disrupted Flight Routes

  1. Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) → San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
  2. San Francisco International Airport (SFO) → Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)
  3. Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) → San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
  4. San Diego International Airport (SAN) → San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
  5. San Francisco International Airport (SFO) → San Diego International Airport (SAN)
  6. Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) → Orlando International Airport (MCO)
  7. San Francisco International Airport (SFO) → Las Vegas McCarran International Airport (LAS)
  8. San Francisco International Airport (SFO) → Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA)
  9. Las Vegas McCarran International Airport (LAS) → San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
  10. Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) → New York John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK)

Source: AirHelp

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