MSP airport expects big rush of travelers for MEA week

The Minnesota Educators Association (MEA) week is when schools across the state are let out of school for two days. It's also one of the busiest travel weekends at MSP airport. http://kare11.tv/2x41i2m

Bloomington, Minn. – The Minnesota Educators Association (MEA) week is when schools across the state are let out of school for two days.

It’s also one of the busiest travel weekends at MSP airport.

“In terms of going through security, Wednesday will be the busiest day," says MSP airport spokesman Pat Hogan. "Forty-five thousand people will be going through the security checkpoints.”

That is roughly 20,000 more travelers per day during the Wednesday through Sunday timeframe.

The past two years, the airport has seen many changes. Delta, American and United now have options to tag your own bags and skip speaking to an attendant.

In addition, Delta is testing facial recognition kiosks where anyone can check their own bag based on a passport photo.

"The process for a lot of people is the same as it always has been, but they have more options now that can help differentiate their experience than even five years ago," Hogan says.

The CLEAR program was also added to the airport, which is similar to TSA Pre Check with some key differences. Travelers pay a $179 yearly fee but won’t have to go through the pre-screening process to be eligible.

The TSA also added automated security lines at its south gate at terminal 1.

“With the automation, if something needs extra inspection, it puts them in a different line so it doesn't hold everybody up," Hogan says.

Another new addition is a live chat feature on the airport website, where average response time is about 90 seconds.

© 2017 KARE-TV


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