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San Diego International Airport remains busy on Thanksgiving Day

Airport: Second busiest Thanksgiving on record
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Posted at 4:46 PM, Nov 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-25 20:13:24-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- Tens of thousands of people traveled in and out of the San Diego International Airport Thursday. Many travelers said they didn't mind trading the traditional Thanksgiving dinner for snacks on a plane.

Scott Duba and his wife Erin were counting several bags and strollers sprawled out at the Southwest Airlines' self-check-in area.

"My kids have never been to California, so we got to see some family that lives here," Erin Duba said.

The Dubas took a weeklong trip with their five children to sunny San Diego for their first vacation since the pandemic began. On Thursday morning, they headed back to Kansas City. They said they chose Thanksgiving day to travel on purpose.

"Just traveling with our large family, we thought that it would be easiest to travel on Thanksgiving day and avoid a little bit of the crowds," Duba said.

According to San Diego International airport officials, on average, 60,000 people are expected to go through the airport this week. The peak will be on Wednesday and Sunday.

Brian Beitzel from Minneapolis said he absolutely had to travel on Thanksgiving day.

"I've actually never traveled on Thanksgiving day before, but with the return of ComicCon, I needed to get to San Diego," Beitzel said.

An abridged version of the convention starts Friday. It's the comeback event after two summers of pandemic cancellations.

"The other experiences were loud, action-packed, and tiring, and I would not miss it for the world," Beitzel said.

Though these travelers may have missed a traditional holiday dinner, they were still filled with holiday spirit.

"Happy Thanksgiving to the Chipmen's and my Aunt Marcy," Duba said.

"Enjoy the holiday!" Beitzel said.

Airport officials said this Thanksgiving holiday season, they are seeing the second busiest travel volume on record, only down by 5% than the record set in 2019.