3 million travelers in 3 days: Holiday travel rush underway despite CDC advice

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The holiday travel rush is well underway at airports across the nation despite the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's advice to stay home this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Transportation Security Administration screened more than 3 million travelers over the weekend as vacations from school and work began.

The TSA screened 1,064,619 people on Sunday, 1,073,563 on Saturdayand 1,066,747on Friday, according to a daily tally it posts to track passenger trends. It is the first time since March with consecutive days of checkpoint numbers over 1 million.

The numbers are still down significantly from a year ago, nearly 60%, or about 1.5 million fewer passengers, each day.

But even with the weekend rush, passenger counts have topped 1 million just eight times since travel demand plummeted in mid-March. The low point came on April 14, with just 87,534 passengers screened.

Four of the 1 million+ traveler screenings occurred during the Thanksgiving travel period, even though the CDC also recommended against Thanksgiving travel, if just a few days before travelers were heading out. On the Sunday after Thanksgiving, a pandemic record 1,176,091 travelers were screened, according to the TSA.

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: COVID travel: TSA screened 3 million passengers as holiday rush starts