Officials at Los Angeles International Airport predicted Thursday that 2.24 million passengers will pass through LAX during the holiday travel season that begins in earnest tomorrow and ends Jan. 2.
That's a 5.4 percent increase over the same 13-day holiday travel period last year at LAX, the nation's third-largest airport.
The busiest travel days are expected to be tomorrow through Sunday; Friday, Dec. 28; and Wednesday, Jan. 2. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are expected to be the lightest travel days at LAX.
Los Angeles World Airports, the independent city agency that manages the airport, announced plans to flood LAX with volunteers to assist with the large volume of travelers. Volunteers will be wearing red vests and roaming the departures-level curbsides and airline ticketing lobbies beginning today.
Passengers with departures scheduled for peak travel times of 6 a.m. to 9 a.m., 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. should expect congestion and plan on arriving to the airport two hours early.
LAX officials also cautioned travelers that a blizzard moving across the Midwest Thursday could cause delays that affect flights in and out of LAX and to check the status of their flights before coming to the airport.
Flights bound for Chicago O'Hare International Airport, a major travel hub, were already being halted, according to the Federal Aviation Administration's website.