Charlotte Douglas International prepares for holiday travel rush

It’s the most wonderful time of the year and also one of the busiest for Charlotte Douglas International Airport.

The airport sees about 23,000 passengers go through security on a typical day but during peak days like what is expected Friday around 31,000 people are expected to pass through. That number does not include the 100,000 people who pass through to catch a connecting flight.

“If you provide ample time we’ll have no issue getting you to your flight,” said Jack Christine, Chief Operating Officer for the airport. Christine says the airport is ready to handle the crowds and even those passengers who may not travel as often as some business travelers.

During the Thanksgiving travel week the longest security wait time was 26 minutes. One thing that could slow that down even more is if you bring a wrapped present through security in your carry on or even if you try to put it in your checked bag. It’s a risk you are taking.

TSA agents will unwrap it if they have to check it. “We might not put it back together perfectly so bring a gift bag or wait until you get to Aunt Sally’s to wrap it,” said Kevin Frederick, the federal security director for the airport. One other problem Frederick says he sees all too often is people bringing guns in their carry-on bags.

He’s encouraging passengers to check their luggage before they pack to make sure there are not any prohibited items.

Getting to the airport can be enough of a headache. If you are picking up someone expect heavy traffic. The airport suggests using the hourly parking deck because the first hour is free and it’s an easy way to get in and out of the airport without sitting on the curb front roadway.

For a detailed list of items that can and cannot be brought on a plane, click here