Pandemic Record: TSA Screens 2+ Million Passengers In One Day

Pandemic Record: TSA Screens 2+ Million Passengers In One Day

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Travel is certainly back, at least domestically. The TSA has been publishing checkpoint travel numbers since the start of the pandemic, which has been an interesting thing to watch to see how travel is evolving. Yesterday set a pretty noteworthy record.

On Friday, June 11, 2021, the Transportation Security Administration screened 2,028,961 passengers. For some context on the significance of that:

  • This is the first time since March 2020 that the TSA screened more than two million passengers in one day; in October 2020 the TSA screened more than one million passengers in one day for the first time since the start of the pandemic
  • On this day in 2020 the TSA screened 519,304 passengers, so this represents a ~290% increase compared to last year
  • On this day in 2019 the TSA screened 2,727,860 passengers, so this represents a ~26% decrease compared to two years ago

Obviously there are still major limitations on international travel, given that many countries still have border restrictions in place. However, there’s no denying that domestically flights are just about as busy as they used to be. If you pass through a hub like Charlotte or Dallas during a peak period you’ll feel like you’re in “the before times,” minus people wearing masks.

I’m curious when we see the 2.5 million passenger milestone passed, and also when we see the first day where passenger numbers exceed 2019 levels.

Bottom line

The TSA screened more than two million passengers yesterday for the first time since March 2020. This comes as we’re seeing a huge boom in summer travel, due to a combination of widespread vaccinations, travel restrictions largely being lifted, and school holidays starting in many places.

Let’s see when the next major passenger screening milestone is reached.

Are you surprised that we’re already back to two million daily air travelers in the USA?

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  1. diane conway

    we traveled on June 12 from BWI to San Diego and everything was fine but when returning on the 17th my son did our confirmation on the 16th everything went through fine got to the airport and they canceled our flights had no rental car no hotel we were just stuck so we complained and at least Southwest put us in a hotel till Saturday but still had no way to Drive anywhereOr do anything,...

    we traveled on June 12 from BWI to San Diego and everything was fine but when returning on the 17th my son did our confirmation on the 16th everything went through fine got to the airport and they canceled our flights had no rental car no hotel we were just stuck so we complained and at least Southwest put us in a hotel till Saturday but still had no way to Drive anywhereOr do anything, it was definitely an inconvenience, thank goodness everyone got home safe. But there sure were a lot of not happy faces at the airport‍

  2. Weymar Osborne

    Flew through DFW on Wednesday. All of the domestic terminals were bustling but Terminal D (international terminal) was noticeably light on passengers

    1. Steve

      I fly out on Saturday morning and every parking garage was full, thankfully my flight was delayed because i would have missed my flight, circled two garages before just leaving and going remote parking. Even terminal D was full, even the top. I have never seen this in all my years at DFW especially with Uber for the past 7 years or so the garages have always been open.

  3. EC2

    Not surprised. People are past the point of concern. Had no issues or concerns on recent trip to KS.

  4. NycAlex

    I flew on Friday. Unfortunately at DTW most of the restaurants were still closed. I had to eat fast food for lunch.

  5. D3kingg

    Ben overreacts sometimes. I’m not going to the airport any earlier next Tuesday. If you know your routine and airport you should be fine. I’m not talking about cutting it close or anything.

    Once in a while I deal with pushy tsa and clear solicitors that try to block off the priority lane at terminal A at IAH. I give them the dykwia .

  6. AC

    Downside is TSA is very understaffed. I live in CLT and there have been horror stories recently of 1 1/2-2 hour waits for TSA and many people missing flights as a result. This was compounded by the storms on Monday that disrupted travel here.

    I have a flight to Miami Monday AM at 9 and just got an E-mail from AA stating I should get to the airport 2-3 hours early due to the long...

    Downside is TSA is very understaffed. I live in CLT and there have been horror stories recently of 1 1/2-2 hour waits for TSA and many people missing flights as a result. This was compounded by the storms on Monday that disrupted travel here.

    I have a flight to Miami Monday AM at 9 and just got an E-mail from AA stating I should get to the airport 2-3 hours early due to the long TSA lines. I'm precheck and also betting, due to reduced business travel, that early Monday won't be as bad as the weekends. However, I am planning to get there a little over 2 hours early. Can kill time in the Centurion Lounge (opens at 7) so the time won't be wasted.

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Steve

I fly out on Saturday morning and every parking garage was full, thankfully my flight was delayed because i would have missed my flight, circled two garages before just leaving and going remote parking. Even terminal D was full, even the top. I have never seen this in all my years at DFW especially with Uber for the past 7 years or so the garages have always been open.

diane conway

we traveled on June 12 from BWI to San Diego and everything was fine but when returning on the 17th my son did our confirmation on the 16th everything went through fine got to the airport and they canceled our flights had no rental car no hotel we were just stuck so we complained and at least Southwest put us in a hotel till Saturday but still had no way to Drive anywhereOr do anything, it was definitely an inconvenience, thank goodness everyone got home safe. But there sure were a lot of not happy faces at the airport‍

Weymar Osborne

Flew through DFW on Wednesday. All of the domestic terminals were bustling but Terminal D (international terminal) was noticeably light on passengers

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