Thousands of workers at Kansas City International Airport are gearing up for the annual rush of Thanksgiving holiday travelers. To keep things at the terminal curbs running smoothly, KCI Airport Police Traffic Control Officers will strictly enforce parking restrictions.
Airlines for America (A4A), the industry trade organization for the leading U.S. airlines, is forecasting nearly 24 million passengers will fly during the 2012 Thanksgiving holiday season on planes that are expected to be full, as carriers continue to more closely match available seats to demand. The nation?s airlines expect the number of passengers traveling from Friday, November 16 through Tuesday, November 27 to be slightly higher than last year. Planes are expected to be close to 90 percent full on the busiest traveling days, which are expected to be Sunday, November 25 (2.4 million passengers), Wednesday, November 21 (2.3 million passengers) and Monday, November 26 (2.3 million passengers).
The Kansas City Aviation Department expects to serve more than 396,000 passengers at KCI during the 2012 Thanksgiving holiday period. This is flat with 2011.
During the busy holiday travel season, passengers are encouraged to check flykci.com for flight status and check in electronically with their airline and print out boarding passes before arriving at the airport. It is advisable to register with their carrier for electronic flight updates, providing cell phone numbers in case of delays or cancellations and allow adequate time for security screening and checking bags. The Department recommends that travelers arrive at the airport terminals 60 to 90 minutes prior to departure, two hours before international flights. It also encourages travelers to check in online and print out itineraries and boarding passes at home.
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has implemented a number of new risk-based security measures, including expedited prescreening initiatives for known travelers and airline crewmembers, and modified procedures for screening passengers 12 and under and 75 and older, to reduce, although not eliminate, the need for a pat-down.
Check TSA's Web site tsa.gov for a complete list of prohibited items and other security information.
Parking at the terminal curbs is not allowed and curb use is restricted to active passenger loading and unloading. Traffic Control Officers will strictly enforce no-parking rules, including asking drivers waiting curbside for passengers to move their vehicles.
There is plenty of on-airport parking available with 23,000 spaces comprising Garage, Circle and Economy lots. Economy Parking is the least expensive airport parking option at $7.00 per day. For seeing off or welcoming family members, the charge is $1.00 for the first 30 minutes in Garage and Circle lots. A coupon for a free day of Economy parking can be downloaded at flykci.com. Check out the new nearby Park Air Express valet parking. KCI Economy parking may be used as a ?cell phone lot? to await arriving passengers. Stay in the Economy Lot up to two hours for FREE.
The KCI web site makes travel easier even before passengers reach the airport. Flykci.com offers real-time flight, parking and weather information (local and destination), flight booking, driving directions and interactive KCI maps. Users can even sign up for email or text message flight status updates. The site also links to airlines, rental car agencies, hotels, TSA and other related sites.
Holiday Travel tips
? Check flykci.com for real-time flight and terminal information for your flight or anyone you may be meeting or seeing off.
? Allow plenty of time to get to the airport, park and check in, arriving 60-90 minutes prior to departure. If you park in any of the 23,000 spaces on-airport you will save a few minutes. If desiring to park off-airport check out the nearby Park Air Express valet parking.
? If you are picking up or dropping off use Garages and Circle lots where parking costs $1.00 for the first 30 minutes. DO NOT park at the curb or your car will be ticketed and towed. KCI Economy parking may be used FREE as a ?cell phone lot? to await arriving passengers for up to two hours.
? Be prepared. Passengers who are prepared for security screening before they reach the checkpoint help make the process easier for both themselves and other passengers.
? Remember 3 simple steps for faster security screening:
1. Have your ID and boarding pass out and ready
2. Take off shoes and jackets
3. Take out liquids (in a baggie) and laptops
? 3?1?1 for carry-on luggage for liquids and gels: 3 ounce bottle or less for all liquids, gels and aerosols; placed in a 1 quart-sized, clear, plastic, zip-top bag to hold all small bottles; 1 bag per passenger.
? TSA recommends that passengers do not travel with wrapped packages. In order to determine if the contents of a package are a threat, a security officer may need to unwrap and inspect the item.
? TSA allows small snow globes in carry-on luggage when packed in a passenger's plastic 3-1-1 bag. Snow globes that appear to contain less than 3.4 ounces (approximately tennis-ball size) will be permitted if the entire snow globe, including the base, is able to fit in the same one clear, plastic, quart-sized, re-sealable bag as a passenger?s other liquids.
? Food items such as pies and cakes are permitted, but may require further inspection. If travelers are not sure if a food item is considered a liquid or gel it is best to pack the item in checked baggage or ship it to a destination in advance.
? When in doubt, leave it out. If you're not sure about whether you can bring an item through the checkpoint, put it in your checked bag or leave it at home.
? If you have any small items that are prohibited at the security checkpoint, use Airport Mailers at each KCI checkpoint to mail it to yourself.
? Check TSA's Web site tsa.gov for a complete list of prohibited items and other security information.