Holiday travel amidst the pandemic
With Thanksgiving just days away and the rest of the holiday season just around the corner, holiday travel at the Gulfport Biloxi International Airport is ramping up. However, the hustle and bustle at airport’s this year will be a little different.
Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport won’t necessarily look like the famous opening scene of the movie ‘Love Actually,’ this holiday season, however, the airport and its travelers are prepared for the holiday travel amidst a global pandemic. Biloxi resident Colt Keith said, “Actually where we’re from there’s actually been a lot of COVID cases popping up. So, we’re just making sure whoever we’re around has been tested lately and they don’t have any symptoms. But other than that, not really worried about it that much.”
The airport has implemented a number of procedures to help keep passengers safe including floor decals to remind people to stay socially distanced, increased sanitation stations around the terminal, along with many other procedures. Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport Director of Marketing Chaille Munn said, “We’ve got signs throughout the terminal reminding people to abide by CDC guidance. There are plexiglass barriers at the counters. And also, our custodial team is in overdrive, implementing enhanced cleaning protocols, especially at high-touch point areas.”
Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport recommends their passengers think of their masks as important as their boarding passes this season, making sure they always have it with them.
Since the pandemic began, the percentage of passengers leaving the Gulfport airport was down 92 percent in April. However, passenger traffic has increased. As of October, airport traffic was only down 47 percent. “We have this week started to see an increase in passengers, so we’re hoping to continue to see a pickup of demand for travelers. You know, people who haven’t seen their family. We’re hoping to see some increase in demand here as the holidays begin.”
Whether departing: “Just headed up to Columbus, Ohio to hang out with family for like two weeks.”
Or arriving: “I’m visiting my boyfriend and his family for Thanksgiving.”
These travelers are eager to see their loved ones. Traveler Victoria Maxwell said, “It’s been a couple of months. I went out to Virginia two months ago and saw him, but I’m just happy to be here.”