More than 65K expected to travel though OIA over holiday weekend

ORLANDO, Fla. — Orlando International Airport is expecting to see some of its biggest crowds in months.

Monday is set to be the busiest day of the Memorial Day holiday travel period.

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Travel leaders said this could be an indicator of what to expect this summer.

Many people said now that they are vaccinated against COVID-19, they are feeling more comfortable to get out and travel.

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Nearly 65,000 travelers are expected to pass through the Orlando airport alone on Monday. Last year, that number was just over 12,000.

“This was our first family trip since the pandemic, and it was exciting and exhausting and fulfilling. We made a lot of memories,” said Heather Ruccio.

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Airport leaders said they are finally seeing crowds similar to pre-pandemic levels.

Rudy Alfaro and his wife were heading home to Chicago on Monday and wrapping up their trip to Orlando over Memorial Day weekend.

“(It’s) my first time being in the airport in two years because of COVID,” he said.

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The Alfaros got to the airport early, thinking it would be a busy day, but said “it wasn’t bad.”

Brian Barney dropped off his family off at OIA.

Things were mostly slow, which was surprising to him.

“I figured they would be a lot more people traveling or coming back home,” he said.

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Katlyn Brieskorn, WFTV.com

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

Adam Poulisse, WFTV.com

Adam Poulisse joined WFTV in November 2019.