New Orleans Airport Expecting Increase in Thanksgiving Holiday Traffic
NEW ORLEANS – The Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (MSY) is expecting an increase in traffic for the Thanksgiving Holiday travel period compared to 2020, but it will still be less than 2019 pre-COVID traffic. Despite the fact that MSY has not yet reached pre-COVID travel numbers, passengers are reminded to be patient and give themselves plenty time to move through the facility as various aspects of Airport service providers are still working to increase their staffing. Departing passengers should always plan to arrive at least two hours before their scheduled departure time.
From Tuesday, Nov. 23 through Monday, Nov. 29, the number of available airline seats are up 58 percent compared the same period in 2020 and down 14 percent compared to 2019. Additionally, there will be a three percent increase in available airline seats during the Thanksgiving period compared to a recent non-holiday period. Sunday, Nov. 28 is expected to be the busiest travel day with over 44,000 available seats.
MSY has compiled the following travel tips to help travelers navigate the Airport for the holiday as families are reunited or take the time to go on vacation.
Plan Ahead & Park MSY
Remember to check real-time parking availability at www.FlyMSY.com before you head to the airport so you can go directly to a parking facility with available spaces. There is also a sign on I-10 W near the Power Boulevard exit which notifies travelers if the parking options near the terminal are full so they can save time and proceed directly to the Economy Garage.
For added convenience, the Economy Garage offers complimentary remote baggage check-in with participating air carriers (American, Delta, Spirit and United). These airlines have worked in partnership with the Airport so travelers can check their luggage from the comfort of their vehicle before parking, catch the shuttle luggage-free, and skip the airline ticket counter.
There are now over 8,000 parking spaces available across four convenient parking options to suit any travel budget. This represents an increase of over 2,300 parking spaces when compared to before the new terminal facility opened.
Passengers can also take advantage of some improved technology features that make finding an open space easier than ever before.
More info is available at https://www.flymsy.com/parking/.
Check TSA Wait Times
Longer wait times are expected at ticket counters and at the security checkpoint over the busy holiday weekend.
Check estimated TSA security checkpoint wait times using MyTSA App.
Indulge at MSY’s Restaurants and Shops
Although MSY’s concessions are still recovering from impacts of COVID-19 and Hurricane Ida, 83 percent of the restaurants and shops are open at varying hours. Concessions continue to expand their hours and there should always be service available on each concourse until the last flight departs.
Find hours of operation here. Find locations and point-by-point directions on the interactive map here.
Face Masks Required
The federal government requires everyone two years and older to wear a mask at all times in the airport. Refusing to wear a mask may result in removal, denial of re-entry and other penalties under federal law.
Read more about how we are keeping MSY Travel Ready for our passengers here.
DOTD Updates 1-10 Access
As work continues to progress on the Loyola Drive, I-10 interchange; drivers can expect traffic configuration changes beginning on Sunday, November 21, 2021.
A temporary ramp will open Sunday evening to allow northbound traffic on Loyola Drive to access I-10 eastbound directly. Drivers leaving the airport or traveling along Veterans Boulevard will be able to make a slight right turn off Loyola to enter the temporary ramp. Northbound traffic on Loyola will also be able to enter I-10 eastbound by making a right turn onto the existing ramp at the I-10, Loyola traffic signal. The temporary at grade ramp will improve traffic flow and relieve congestion by providing free flowing access to I-10 for traffic leaving the airport.
The northbound lanes of Loyola will shift slightly right to accommodate construction of the direct access flyover ramps to and from the airport.
Read more about the traffic configuration changes here.