Busy Travel Weekend Expected For Memorial Day

CHICAGO (CBS) — Memorial Day weekend is right around the corner, which means the start of the busy summer travel season. Whether you’ve booked a flight, or are hitting the road, you’re sure to see some congestion.

Between Thursday and Tuesday, approximately 1.6 million travelers will fly through O’Hare and Midway airports.

The Chicago Department of Aviation said about 1.2 million passengers were expected to use O’Hare International Airport during that time, a 1.5 percent increase over last year. Nearly 400,000 passengers were expected to use Midway International Airport, a 5 percent jump from 2014.

Officials reminded travelers using either airport to give themselves extra time for security lines. For travelers at O’Hare International Airport, several roadway construction projects in the area could pack on extra time to your trip.

“There are a lot of IDOT [Illinois Department of Transportation] projects going on around the airport – on Irving Park Road, and some ramp closures – but we also have roadway construction on the terminal upper level at O’Hare, so that’s going to cause some delays, so passengers should allow a little extra time for that,” Aviation Department spokeswoman Karen Pride said.

If you’re driving, you’ll join more than 37 million Americans driving at least 50 miles for the holiday weekend, a 4.7 percent increase over last year. In Illinois alone, 1.9 million are taking a road trip.

The AAA Motor Club said the expected travel this year would be the highest number of Memorial Day weekend travelers in a decade, if predictions hold true.

The good news for drivers, while gas prices have shot up noticeably over recent weeks, they are still down significantly from last year.

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