Holiday travel through Orlando expected to be at highest level since coronavirus shutdown

ORLANDO, Fla. — The busiest days for Orlando International Airport are coming up.

Airport officials expect more than 44,000 passengers on Sunday, Nov. 29. But that number is down about 50 percent from last year.

Airport leaders said they believe the year will end up better than expected.

Watch: Orlando International Airport resumes international flights to South America

Eights months into the pandemic, and travel seems to be one of the last things to get back to normal.

Things are looking up for the holidays, but we are way behind what we were before COVID-19.


The world has changed, and travel is no exception.

Airport leaders said they are going into a busy time of year, and in the next 12 days, they could see more travelers daily since the shutdown back in March.

Watch: FDA approves first rapid, at-home COVID-19 self-test

Projections show that, starting Friday, anywhere from 33,000 to 44,000 passengers will depart from MCO with the busiest day being the Sunday after Thanksgiving.

“We are better than expected,” said Phile Brown with OIA. “But we are still down about 7% or so from were we a year ago.”

The outlook is good considering the spike in cases, restrictions and rollbacks continuing across the U.S.

Watch: Carnival Cruise Line cancels all U.S. cruises through January 2021

OIA was the second busiest airport in the U.S. last week behind Los Angeles International Airport.

The numbers are a sign that even with a second wave, people still want to see their families for the holidays.

See the full report in the video above.

Shannon Butler

Shannon Butler,

Shannon joined the Eyewitness News team in 2013.