ORLANDO, Fla. – As holiday travelers headed home on Saturday, they were met with large crowds at the Orlando International Airport. The early morning hours saw some of the worst foot traffic as families crowded towards security. 

What You Need To Know

  • Long lines expected this weekend at Orlando International Airport

  • Over 165,000 people expected at the airport on Saturday

  • Very little parking available at the airport and off-site

Thanksgiving week has been one of the busiest of the holiday season at Orlando International, with tens of thousands of passengers arriving and departing every day. Orlando was the number one travel destination in the U.S. this Thanksgiving. 

“I don’t think I’ve been in a line this long at the airport,” said Donna Welch, who traveled home to Tennessee early Saturday. 

Airport officials predicted over 165,000 people would pass through Orlando International on Saturday –  with traveler volume similar to pre-pandemic levels and 10 percent higher than 2021.

For Wesley Staats, who flew to Baltimore for work later in the morning, the airport was barely the beginning of his journey.

“I’m transporting a car,” said Staats. “So I gotta go to Baltimore and pick it up and drive it fifteen hours back to Florida.” 

As the weekend of travel continues, delays could ramp up again, so the airport is telling people to arrive 3 hours before their departing flights are scheduled to leave.

In addition to potentially long waits for departing flights, very little parking is available at or near Orlando International Airport.

Even off-site parking was scarce this week, and the airport recommends people on their way to catch a flight opt for taxis and ride shares, rather than testing their luck with parking.