Passengers Pack Atlanta’s Airport

By Jennifer Leslie
11 Alive News, August 6, 2007

So many people were expected to pass through security at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport on Sunday that Julius and Christy Scott arrived nine hours before their flight home to Buffalo.

“Buffalo’s a small airport, and we knew Atlanta was really big, so we wanted to get here in plenty of time,” Christy Scott said.

They were just two of the 60,000 people in town for the massive Primerica convention over the weekend.

It ended Saturday night, which made Sunday the big travel day.

“You kind of expect with 60,000 people leaving Atlanta, it’s gonna be packed,” Julius Scott said.

Airport officials issued a travel advisory last week when they saw that advanced airline bookings showed more than 52,000 passengers were scheduled to fly out of Atlanta Sunday. They’re considered originating passengers.

That’s about 40 percent more than the summer average of 37,000 originating per day.

“I told my brother-in-law last night that we would have to get up extra early,” said traveler Richard Litwin. “I said that I’d be at his house at 6:00 and he told me that I was crazy.”

But he was right. Airport officials urged passengers to arrive at least two hours before their flights Sunday.

Along with the convention travelers, they expect that many families will head out for their last summer getaways before school starts again.