As COVID-19 cases rise, number of holiday travelers falls in Columbus


COLUMBUS (WCMH) – The Thanksgiving holiday is traditionally the busiest time of the year for travel, but with coronavirus cases at record high levels in both Ohio and across the country, the number of travelers is expected to hit a record low.

Workers at the John Glenn International Airport said that over the last few days, they’ve been seeing they haven’t seen in a while – people waiting in line.

It’s no secret that the airline industry has been one of the hardest hit by the pandemic.

Over the next week and a half, the airport authority estimates 65,000 people will depart from Columbus, a 60 percent drop compared to last year, and lines up with the 60 percent drop in traffic the airport has seen overall this year.

Just this week, the Center for Disease Control said because of the exponential rise in cases, it is recommending against traveling for Thanksgiving.

Some people in the airport Saturday said they’re trying to find the balance between staying safe and seeing their loved ones.

“There is a risk,” said Dayton resident Cindy Schweibold. “My husband and I feel like it’s worth it to see them. Originally, we host 27 of our family members at our house and this year, there’s going to be my son from Seattle and my daughter from Cleveland. So that’s how it’s changed. Much smaller. Much cozier.”

If you’ve had any exposure to or symptoms of COVID-19, it is recommended you do not travel, even if you’ve already purchased a ticket.

Almost every major airline has waived their cancellation and change fees so you can still take that trip when it’s safe.

Coronavirus in Ohio resources:

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending on

Today's Central OH Forecast

More Forecast

Don't Miss


Storm Team 4 on Alexa