MOBILE, Ala (WALA) – Travel is continuing to bounce back after a pandemic low more than a year ago.
The increase in people flying this summer is happening amid another wave and a new strain of COVID-19.
More than 1.8 million were screened by the TSA nationwide on Tuesday, three times higher than the same day last year.
“It was my first time on a plane in a while so it was fun, I love flying so it was so was really cool to go back through the airport and get back on the plane,” said Peyton Bennett.
Bennett flew into Mobile Regional, Wednesday morning to visit family and the beach.
“It was quiet in Indianapolis, but the time we landed in Charlotte it was definitely booming, it was probably the biggest crowd I’ve been around in 2 years, it was really busy,” he said.
Bennett is not alone in the air.
The TSA says they have screened more than 10 million people nationwide since last Friday.
At Mobile Regional Airport, government data shows passengers are coming back.
According to the most recent numbers available more than 18,000 people flew out in April, up from roughly 2,000 in April 2020.
“I do miss having the extra space on the plane that was always nice,” said Chance Carrick. “I’m ready for things to get back to as normal as they can.”
As more people take flight, airlines are scrambling to keep up with demand.
They are ramping up operations and staffing to make sure passengers can go where they want.
“A lot of people have called and said they really want to get out of the house and go somewhere,” said Jacquonda Fox, Owner of Fox Travel Agency in Mobile.
Fox says she has seen the resurgence of travel first hand.
“I think they feel comfortable going now,” she said. “6 months ago it was nothing, nobody was going anywhere.”
The spread of the delta variant of COVID-19 is not slowing summer travel down.
“We’re fully vaccinated so we didn’t feel very concerned,” Bennett said. “We knew they were still doing full masking on the planes and everything we weren’t particularly nervous.”
As travel increases health leaders continue to push vaccinations.
On Thursday, the Mobile County Health Department will be holding clinic at the airport from 9 am to 3pm.
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