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Travel experts expect longer wait times at airports amid bad weather, increased holiday traffic

For Southeast Texans who decide to travel by car, TxDOT officials are encouraging drivers to stay safe by staying alert.

BEAUMONT, Texas — Southeast Texans are advised to plan ahead when preparing for holiday travels as industry analysts predict this year’s travel season will be busier than normal.

Between the possibility of bad weather and increases in holiday traffic, analysts expect a great deal of travelers and longer wait times.

Alex Rupp is a manager of Jack Brooks Regional Airport and he said the best thing anyone can do is be prepared.

Rupp also suggests that when preparing to travel, Southeast Texans should pack their luggage properly. This in itself could save travelers time as they get through airport lines.

“Over the holidays, everyone wants to bring gifts when they arrive,” Rupp said. “It's always a rule of thumb that you never want to bring gifts in your luggage, because due to the increase in the amount of travelers that are flying, you see an increase in the numbers of lost luggage.”

However, some things cannot be planned for, such as delays outside of passengers and airport control like bad weather.

“Allow for flexibility. Weather is always a huge factor in air travel,” Rupp said.

For Southeast Texans who decide to drive rather than fly, Texas Department of Public Transportation officials said there will be no lane closures this holiday season. TxDOT officials are encouraging drivers to stay safe by staying alert and paying attention to street signs.

“Urge everyone to please be as cautious as possible when you are out there on the roadway. Make sure you are paying attention to everything going on around you, and that you're doing everything to be as safe as you can,” Sarah DuPre, TxDOT public information's officer, said.

According to GasBuddy, higher gas prices are also a factor in holiday travel.

However you decide to travel this year, safety is key. Drivers can look up their driving route at TxDOT’s website or find answers to unanswered questions at their airport's website.

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