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'It is going to be busy': Thanksgiving travel nearing pre-pandemic levels in central Indiana

Posted at 11:02 PM, Nov 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-16 23:02:17-05

INDIANAPOLIS — It is a week away from the busiest travel days of the year. Travel is expected to return to near pre-pandemic levels.

For Victoria Fricke, it is the busy season.

“Our phones and our emails are going off nonstop. Everybody sees the cold, it’s snowing. It’s yucky and you want to get out,” Fricke said.

The Indianapolis-based travel agent with “Vic’s Vacations” warns travelers this Thanksgiving holiday things will be busy. Fricke offers these tips for travelers heading to the airport next week.

First, invest in travel insurance.

“You can always purchase it when you're checking out. It's through a third party anyway, so let's just get another third party if you've already missed that step, it's fine,” Fricke said.

Second, get there early.

“I would say there's no reason that you have anything less than two hours you would much rather be sitting on the opposite side of TSA annoyed that you're sitting there waiting, drinking a coffee, reading a paper than you would be on the other side – frantic,” Fricke said.

Last, check airport parking availability.

“They already have their parking lots of pretty much full, so you need to know if you're driving that there's a space for your car,” Fricke said.

AAA Hoosier Motor Club notes this year’s Thanksgiving travel is predicted as the third busiest on record. While some 4.5 million Americans are set to fly, many more will hit the roads.

“It is going to be busy no matter which way you're traveling this season. We recommend giving yourself plenty of time to get where you need to go, planning ahead and just being patient,” Lisa Wall with AAA Hoosier Motor Club.

Wall offers these tips for drivers over the Thanksgiving holiday:

- check traffic before hitting the road
- pack an emergency kit for winter weather
- drive during off-peak times

“You can avoid those peak travel times of about four to eight. Whether it's leaving in the morning or leaving a little bit later that's going to hopefully alleviate the traffic that you're going to run into,” Wall said.