ROANOKE, Va. – This holiday season could be one of the busiest the Roanoke-Blacksburg Regional Airport has seen in the last five years.
Director of marketing and air service Bradley Boettcher said that while the increase in traffic could eventually mean lower fares, it could also mean longer lines at the airport.
“We are trying to get fares more competitive and make that compelling argument with carriers and we speak with them about this on a regular basis,” said Boettcher. “The carriers even admitted that they make a lot of money here and have no incentive to change.”
If you are traveling with gifts this year be sure to wrap them after you fly. The Transportation Security Administration said that, for security purposes, it may have to unwrap the presents for inspection.
Also, if you haven't traveled recently, TSA has made some changes regarding your luggage.
“Be sure to check the new screening requirements, because now they are going to have people start taking books out if they are stacked too thick,” said Boettcher.
Boettcher said that the traffic increase is the result of community support. People are choosing to fly locally even though the fares may not be as cheap as they are at other airports.
"Traffic this year is up. We are at about 18,000 passengers that will come through the facility between last weekend and through New Year’s,” said Boettcher. “That compares to about last year, we are up about 2,000 passengers versus last year."