Good luck with these flights and these airports on Thanksgiving Day
Ah, the joys of holiday travel.
Flight delays, departurelevel gridlock, flight cancellations, overbookings, gate changes.
The fun never ends. If you or your loved ones are among those pitiful Americans who plan to fly somewhere this week for Thanksgiving, it’s time to fasten your seat belt. Traveling in an and out of places like the San Francisco Bay Area, Chicago, Miami and, oh heck, just about anywhere airplanes fly may make you wish the holiday season was already in the rear-view mirror.
Fortunately, there are plenty of travel sites and aviation experts who study this ghastly annual phenomenon of coming home for the holidays and their findings can help guide the flying public. Take this recent survey by AirHelp, which bills itself as being the world’s leading passenger-rights specialist and has helped millions of travelers get compensation for disrupted flights in 30 countries. The scores they give to airports are based on factors including ontime performance, quality of the in-terminal services, and even on interviews they do with scores of travelers about eating and shopping options at various airports. This year’s global winner was Hamad International Airport, so if you’re heading to Qatar for Turkey Day, you’re in luck.
As AirHelp points out the obvious on their website — “traveling can be frustrating because of bad weather, overbookings, and delays” — here’s a snapshot of what their most recent data shows about challenging airports and routes within the United States:
Airports with the most disruptions
Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD)
Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport (ATL)
San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)
Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR)
Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW)
Boston Logan International Airport (BOS)
Denver International Airport (DEN)
John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK)
Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT)
Most disrupted routes
San Francisco International Airport (SFO) to Seattle Tacoma International Airport (SEA)
Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) to San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
San Francisco International Airport (SFO) to Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR)
San Francisco International Airport (SF) to Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD)
Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
San Francisco International Airport (SFO) to Los
Angeles International Airport (LAX)
Oakland International Airport (OAK) to Burbank Airport (BUR)
Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) to San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
Burbank Airport (BUR) to Oakland Airport (OAK)
Nantucket Airport (ACK) to Boston Logan International Airport (BOS)
Also, AAA has been crunching the data, along with transportation analytics company INRIX, and they came up with a by-thenumbers look at Thanksgiving travel this year.
“Millions of thankful Americans are starting the holiday season off right with a Thanksgiving getaway,” AAA vice president Paula Twidale said in a statement. “Strong economic fundamentals are motivating Americans to venture out this holiday in near-record numbers. Consumer spending remains strong, thanks to increasing wages, disposable income and household wealth, and travel remains one of their top priorities for the holiday season.”