Families reunite at Salt Lake City airport for Thanksgiving after a year apart

SALT LAKE CITY – Vacation travel to Salt Lake City International Airport is approaching levels seen before the pandemic.

On Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving, the airport estimates that 26,000 people have passed through the doors of the establishment, a large increase from the same day in 2020.

“Last year during the pandemic we had about 13,500 people through the front door,” said Salt Lake City airport spokeswoman Nancy Volmer. “We are getting closer to the pre-pandemic figures.”

In the terminal, several families exchanged hugs when travelers arrived in the reception area. Many were forced to stay separated last holiday season due to the threat of COVID-19.

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“I actually stayed home alone because I was nervous about traveling,” said Billie Carson, who traveled to Utah to surprise her family. “I have the impression that since things are better, it is so much better.”

With safety measures in place, Carson felt safe while flying again.

“If we have the masks and everyone washes their hands, we’ll be good to go,” she said.

For travelers like Carson, this holiday season represents a return to normal – the way the holidays were meant to be celebrated.

“We are very grateful to have all of our returning passengers,” Volmer said. “People are traveling again, they are much more comfortable and we welcome them. “

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