More than 300K to pass through OIA over Labor Day weekend

ORLANDO, Fla. — A busy weekend is ahead for people in Central Florida.

Orlando International Airport is expecting to break records for people traveling across the country this holiday weekend.

The Centers for Disease Control Prevention is asking travelers not to hop on a plane if they haven’t been vaccinated against COVID-19.

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Orlando International Airport saw pre-pandemic crowd levels on Saturday.

“We haven’t traveled in a while so we kind of forgot how crazy the airport gets,” said Sebastian Gonzalez-Portillo.

Gonzalez-Portillo said he and his family were taken off guard when they saw the crowds at OIA on Saturday morning.

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“It’s definitely concerning, especially with the rise of the delta variant in Florida. I definitely think that travel should not be this busy, but unfortunately it is. People have things to do,” Gonzalez-Portillo said.

The Orlando International Airport expects about 303,000 people to pass through from Thursday to Tuesday.

That’s 20,000 more travelers than they saw in 2019.

With Saturday looking like the biggest travel day, Emily Paeth and Mika Relay said they’re looking forward to heading back home and taking it easy after spending the past few days in Central Florida.

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“I was a little nervous, admittedly but I always wash my hands pretty frequently but I was a little eh.”

This comes as the CDC has issued a warning for people without their COVID-19 shots to avoid large gatherings and traveling.

The CDC said those fully vaccinated can travel at their own risk, but they should still wear a mask as much as they can, including the airport.

Katlyn Brieskorn, WFTV.com

Katlyn Brieskorn is a Digital Assignment Editor at WFTV. She joined Channel 9 in July 2019.