Traffic

EXPECT DELAYS AT AIRPORT

GULFPORT - Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport officials are starting to hear more complaints about construction tangling up operations, but they're asking for patience.

"I don't think it's going to get any worse than it is now," Executive Director Bruce Frallic said. "It's just going to continue to get better, little by little."

The airport has started getting the word out about expected holiday delays, with peaks around Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day and overall seasonal increases in traffic.

Flights with about 113 percent the number of seats from last November are expected this month, and historically planes fly at near capacity.

Airport officials advise passengers traveling on those holiday-rush days to arrive at least two hours before departure. They say Wednesday through Friday afternoons between 2:30 and 5:30 also require early arrivals.

Contractors are on schedule to open all areas of the expanded parking lot by Nov. 22, the day before Thanksgiving.

The number of paved parking spaces will increase from 724 to 1,100, with 140 for employees. There will be room for 340 more cars in unpaved lots.

A different crew of contractors along with the Transportation Security Administration are trying to get facilities ready to move the security checkpoint, which will also add a second line. They are trying to meet a Dec. 7 deadline.

The airport hopes one more change will help traffic flow better in the terminal. It is trying to convert the restaurant and bar to the secure side of the terminal, meaning passengers can access it once they pass through security.

When Hudson News moved inside, it also greatly increased its business by letting passengers who get through the checkpoint early shop more leisurely.

That move isn't a matter just of shifting around a few walls. TSA has to get involved to screen deliveries.

"It's going to be tough to do it, but we're trying. It's not a matter of just constructing; there's several other things you have to do."

Traveling tips

The Transportation Security Agency makes these recommendations for travelers:

  Use the 3-1-1: All liquids, gels and aerosols you carry on board must be in 3-ounce or smaller containers, and they must fit in one 1-quart, zip-top, clear plastic bag. The bag must be removed and placed in the screening bin at the checkpoint.

  Milk and medicine: Baby formula and breast milk for small children; prescription and over-the-counter medications; and liquids (including water, juice or liquid nutrition or gels) for passengers with a disability or medical condition may be carried on. They should be separated from your 3-1-1 bag and declared at the checkpoint for additional screening.

  Buy on the other side: You can carry any drinks purchased on the secure side of the terminal onto your flight.

- TSA.GOV

Traveling tips

The Transportation Security Agency makes these recommendations for travelers:

  Use the 3-1-1: All liquids, gels and aerosols you carry on board must be in 3-ounce or smaller containers, and they must fit in one 1-quart, zip-top, clear plastic bag. The bag must be removed and placed in the screening bin at the checkpoint.

  Milk and medicine: Baby formula and breast milk for small children; prescription and over-the-counter medications; and liquids (including water, juice or liquid nutrition or gels) for passengers with a disability or medical condition may be carried on. They should be separated from your 3-1-1 bag and declared at the checkpoint for additional screening.

  Buy on the other side: You can carry any drinks purchased on the secure side of the terminal onto your flight.

- TSA.GOV

Holiday travel tips

AirTran makes these holiday travel recommendations:

  Leave the wrapping to Santa's elves: Wrapped gifts may have to be unwrapped during security screenings. Consider shipping gifts ahead of time. Do not carry wrapped gifts you have received from others.

  Keep your valuable stocking stuffers with you: Place your medicine, jewelry, cameras, and other valuables in your carry-on baggage.

  Remember there's not much room in the sleigh: On the aircraft, you are allowed one carry-on bag and one personal item. A personal item is defined as a purse, briefcase, diaper bag or laptop-computer bag. Per FAA regulations, both the carry-on bag and the personal item must fit underneath the seat in front of you or in the overhead bins.


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