Sunday expected to be busiest travel day at Orlando International Airport this holiday season

ORLANDO, Fla. – As the holiday season winds down, plenty of travelers are heading home,…

ORLANDO, Fla. – As the holiday season winds down, plenty of travelers are heading home, which means a busy weekend for Orlando International Airport.

Sunday, Jan. 3 is expected to be the busiest day for the airport this holiday season, with nearly 45,000 departing passengers.

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The numbers come despite recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to stay home this holiday season.

In a release from the Orlando International airport, these are the expected departure numbers for the airport:

Projected Busiest Days Departures
1 Sunday, Jan. 3 44,971
2 Sunday, Dec. 27 44,571
3 Sunday, Dec. 20 43,131
4 Saturday, Jan. 2 42,643
5 Saturday, Dec. 26 42,362
6 Monday, Jan. 4 42,123
7 Monday, Dec. 21 41,929
8 Saturday, Dec. 19 41,852
9 Monday, Dec. 28 41,540
10 Wednesday, Dec. 23 38,982
11 Tuesday, Dec. 22 37,613
12 Tuesday, Dec. 29 36,910
13 Wednesday, Dec. 30 36,426
14 Friday, Dec. 18 35,675
15 Tuesday, Jan. 5 33,397
16 Thursday, Jan. 7 33,199
17 Wednesday, Jan. 6 31,725
18 Friday, Jan. 1 28,385
19 Thursday, Dec. 31 26,007
20 Thursday, Dec. 24 25,800
21 Friday, Dec. 25 25,595

On Saturday evening, News 6 monitored TSA screening, which took an estimated 20 minutes for a passenger to pass through.

Airport leaders previously told News 6 they ramped up their safety efforts for the holidays, including hand-sanitizing stations, social distancing markers and special sanitizing UV lighting.

Last month, airport leaders announced travelers would soon be able to get tested for COVID-19 at a clinic near the west end of the terminal.

The testing site is being set up as part of the concession program and will be located pre-security on the airport’s third level at the west end of the main terminal in the storefront, which previously housed a Kennedy Space Center shop, according to Greater Orlando Aviation Authority CEO Phil Brown.

The testing clinic was projected to open in December, however, a spokesperson at Orlando International Airport confirmed that the clinic has not opened yet and said airport officials continue to coordinate with AdventHealth Centra Care over how the setup will work.

Once it opens, operations are scheduled to continue through the end of July 2021.

According to a presentation slide, the tests are expected to cost anywhere from $60-80 for a rapid antigen test and $160-190 for a rapid PCR test.

It’s not clear when exactly testing will begin.

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