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Travelers flock to Miami International Airport, but the biggest problem is the lack of parking

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MIAMI, Fla. As officials at airports across the country, including Miami International Airport, expected the number of passengers flying for Thanksgiving to be close to pre-pandemic levels, the biggest problem at the MIA on Thursday was parking.

The MIA has issued a travel tip on its social networks warning travelers that the airport parking garages are full. Local 10 News at the airport spoke to passengers who said they had about an hour around the garages with their cars.

Airport officials are suggesting alternatives such as using rideshare, taxi services or Tri-Rail.

Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport was advising drivers to use overcrowded parking.

Even before the parking pain at the MIA, passengers found traffic jams trying to enter the airport.

And inside, people gathered in queues to check. The Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) says it expects nationwide security checkpoints to be occupied during the Thanksgiving holiday travel period, which runs through Sunday, November 28th.

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Officials advise you to arrive at the airport at least 2 hours before your scheduled departure, but with parking headaches and other travel traffic jams, you may be advised to leave even longer.

TSA Administrator David Pekoske says travel could be very close to pre-pandemic levels this holiday season.

[RELATED: Check up-to-the-minute wait times at MIA security checkpoints]

This comes as the airline industry is recovering from a shortage of workers. But both TSA and airlines are gathering staff and are ready for the crowds.

Typically, the busiest days during the Thanksgiving travel period are Tuesday and Wednesday before Thanksgiving and the week after. The highest travel day in TSA history was the Sunday after Thanksgiving 2019 (before the pandemic), when nearly 2.9 million individuals were checked at TSA security checkpoints nationwide.

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Pekoske advises travelers to get their patience ready. As overall vaccination rates improve across the country and with greater confidence in healthy travel, there will be more people traveling, so plan ahead, stay vigilant, and practice kindness.

  • Get answers to your questions before you go to the airport. Ask the TSA. Travelers can get real-time assistance by submitting their questions and comments to @AskTSA IN Tweet or Facebook Messenger. Travelers can also reach the TSA Contact Center at 866-289-9673. Staff is available from 08:00 until 23:00 on weekdays and from 9:00 to 20:00 on weekends / holidays; and an automated service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

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