Local News

RDU International Offers Tips For Holiday Travel

Posted December 19, 2001

— Extra staff will working at

Raleigh-Durham International Airport

to help customers deal with travel issues during the Christmas holiday travel season.

The airport expects a brisk but steady traffic flow during the Christmas travel period Dec. 19 through Jan. 2, with the busiest travel time expected this weekend and the weekend of Dec. 29.

Over 400,000 people are expected to pass through the airport during the 14-day period. With Midway back in the air offering nine daily departures to six East Coast destinations, the travel season promises to be an active one.

Airport officials advise passengers to arrive early to allow plenty of time for parking, check-in and security clearance. The airport will be offering free musical performances at scheduled times during the day and evening, to help fill the extra waiting time.

Some airlines recommend that travelers arrive at least two hours before their scheduled departures. When in doubt, travelers should check with their airlines for recommended arrival times prior to departure.

To speed the security screening process, the airport now has four security checkpoint lanes at Terminal A, two lanes at Terminal A extension and three lanes at Terminal C, excluding the security checkpoint lane used for international travel.

Travelers are advised to go directly to the Park and Ride lots and catch courtesy shuttles to avoid congestion in front of the terminals. Airport courtesy buses provide service every 15 minutes between Park and Ride lots and the terminals.

Vehicles are not allowed to wait at the curb for arriving passengers. Drivers waiting inside their vehicles will be asked to move on. Because of security concerns, unattended vehicles left at the curb will be towed immediately.

Luggage carts will be available in the parking decks near the terminals.

To make your holiday travel easier, follow these travel tips:

If you are parking:

  • Arrive early. Airlines suggest you arrive two hours before scheduled departure to allow time for increased security checks and parking. Check with your airline for its recommendation.
  • Use Park& Ride lots; RDU's courtesy buses pick up every 15 minutes to take you to the terminals.
  • Follow the signs to available parking; electronic signs will give you current information on lots and availability.
  • Write down where you parked so you can easily find your vehicle when you return.
  • Check the

    RDU Web site

    for information on parking, maps of RDU, airline links and other details.

  • Listen to 1610 AM for parking information.
  • If a friend is dropping you off or picking you up:

  • Arrive early, at least two hours before your airline's departure, to allow time for increased security checks.
  • Discuss details about airline, arrival time and exact meeting place.
  • No waiting in vehicle or unattended vehicles are allowed at curbside; curbside is reserved for active drop-off and pick-up only.
  • Check-in:

  • Curbside check-in has been reinstated in most cases, but check with your airline first.
  • Bring at least one government-issued photo ID (such as driver's license) for check-in and security screening and be ready to show it several times before your flight. Expired licenses or IDs are not accepted.
  • Passengers must present a printed ticket confirmation to pass the security checkpoint. An e-ticket confirmation must include the passenger's name, flight itinerary and a ticket confirmation number.
  • Ticketed passengers only are permitted past security. However, children traveling unaccompanied or elderly or handicapped travelers may request a gate pass from their airline for one adult to accompany them to/from the gate area.
  • New FAA regulations stipulate only one carry-on bag and one personal carry-on, such as a handbag or briefcase; check all other luggage. Laptops must be removed from their cases and scanned separately at the checkpoint.
  • Do not pack knives, cutting or puncturing implements of any kind in your carry-on luggage. Also not allowed are golf clubs, baseball bats, knitting needles, ski poles or the like. These items may be packed in checked luggage. When in doubt, check with your airline.
  • Do not pack wrapped gift packages; heightened security measures require that packages be unwrapped and examined, which will slow the security check-in process. If possible, mail or ship packages ahead of time.
  • If you're carrying food on board, avoid aluminum or metal pans. Wrap food or other items in plastic, paper or cardboard.
  • Have your luggage clearly labeled, and do not take anything from strangers.
  • Do not leave your luggage unattended.
  • Claim bags immediately upon arrival. Unclaimed or unattended bags may be confiscated.
  • Please cooperate with increased security regulations if you and/or your baggage-- both checked and carry-on, are searched. Passengers may be wand searched or patted down at the checkpoint and/or gate.
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