Salt Lake airport prepares for busy week
With the Denver International Airport closure last week, holiday travelers have already seen how weather can ruin flight plans. Parkites woke up to snow Friday morning, begging the question, is Salt Lake City International next?
The Weather Channel reports say the next 10 days will be cold, and some snow is likely, but not enough to close an airport. Dave Korzep, superintendent of airport operations at SLC, thinks the airport won’t have too many hang-ups.
"Historically Christmas is a pretty busy time, and the situation in Denver exacerbates the problem, but they’re going to open at noon today," Korzep said early Friday morning. "But we’re busy. The terminals and security lines are bustling and everybody is in good spirits college kids heading home and family coming in. It’s a good time for travel."
Korzep said there haven’t been an extraordinary number of cancellations and that parking hasn’t been a problem. All parking lots are open, he said, and there are informative signs at the entrance to the garage. There is also room for curbside pickups.
"Out here in Salt Lake we have that Park n’ Wait parking lot for people who are picking people up," he said "You can stop and wait while checking flight status on the electronic boards they have. The curbside parking gets pretty crowded, so it’s considerate to wait until the flight is here before pulling up."
Korzep said he recommends arriving at least 90 minutes before scheduled flight times for domestic flights, and two hours before for international flights.
"The best thing to do if you’re flying is to check with your airline prior to coming to the airport that’s the absolutely safest way to go," he said. "They’ll have the most current flight information."
As for getting through security, Korzep said the 3-1-1 security measures are still in force. All carry-on liquids, aerosols and gels must be in containers three ounces or less, placed in a one quart, clear plastic zip-top bag, of which each passenger may have one.
He also said not to wrap presents, because they will need to be opened to be checked.
For Parkites trying to get to the airport, Al Noble, general manager of Park City Transportation, had one piece of advice allow plenty of travel time.
"The commute has been fine, but we recommend that, because of security, we pick people up three hours before flight time," he said. "When we’ve done three hours we’ve never had problems getting people to their gate on time no matter how bad the roads get or how bad security can be."
Noble said he thinks his numbers will be up this year compared to previous holiday weekends. With Park City becoming more of a featured destination, he said, he expects each year to top the last.
"Coming in for Christmas our passenger forecast is up strongly from last year," he said. "We’ve seen this every year the city gets busier and the word spreads."
For more information, visit http://www.tsa.gov.
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Summit County heard from the Park City Community Foundation that the county’s $1 million grant last year likely helped hundreds of people avoid homelessness. The nonprofit’s representatives said open lines of communication were key to ensuring that grant money went where it was needed. | Courtesy of the Park City Community Foundation