Florida airports expected to set records during holidays

MIAMI – Holiday travel in 2022 is expected to rival the busiest seasons before the pandemic at Miami International and Fort Lauderdale Airport, which will see millions of travelers passing through them over the next two weeks.

Expectations are that 2.5 million passengers will make their way through MIA, which is up from the airport’s previous record last year, officials said.

Officials are asking travelers to get to the airport early as 1.6 million are expected to use Fort Lauderdale Airport, a 13 percent spike from 2021.

Nationwide travel experts expect 102 million Americans will be traveling by air and by ground.

And as a winter storm is forecasted to make its way through parts of the country, some airlines are already reporting cancelations and delays ahead of it.

If you’re trying to beat the storm, you can ask your airline for a free travel waiver, allowing you to move your existing flight.

“You need to make sure you’re checking with the airline, you’re flying to see what their specific policy covers,” said Melanie Fish, an employee with Expedia.

If your flight is canceled, you are entitled to a refund if you choose not to take a rescheduled flight.

Experts are also asking travelers to look at the rebooking policy because not every airline offers the option.

“Automation is your friend,’ said Fish. “Use the apps or the website that you booked your travel in and go ahead and see what your rebooking options are. You can call, but those wait times are going to be long”

If your cancelation has nothing to do with weather, your traveler bill of rights entitles you to a free hotel and free meals.

“Generally speaking, airlines are required to provide refunds if they cancel the flight and no reasonable alternatives are offered,” Fish said. “The airlines want to help you get where you need to go. So they’re going to work with you, especially this week.”

Experts advise customers to arrive 2 hours early for a domestic flight and 3 hours early for international, however, as Christmas nears, many are saying to plan ahead and get there as early as you can.

About the Author:

Christian De La Rosa joined Local 10 News in April 2017 after spending time as a reporter and anchor in Atlanta, San Diego, Orlando and Panama City Beach.