May 22, 2023 - Transit

XNA sees most-ever travel ahead of Memorial Day

Illustration of a airplane wearing a flower lei

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Northwest Arkansas National Airport has more than bounced back from the COVID-19 pandemic.

By the numbers: XNA had more than 80,700 tickets flying out this March, up 14.5% from March 2019. The airport saw an 8.5% increase from April 2019 to the same month this year, with 77,404 enplanements, airport spokesperson Olivia Moore told Axios.

  • The first quarter of 2022 was up 11.2% in tickets from the first quarter in 2019 — the airport's busiest year until the pandemic.

What they're saying: "It has been the busiest March and April in airport history," Moore said.

  • "We are expecting and prepared for a busy Memorial Day," she added.
  • She recommends arriving at the airport at least two hours before a flight.

Driving the news: AAA estimates that 42.3 million Americans will travel this coming weekend — up 7% over last year. It's projected to be the third-busiest Memorial Day weekend ever.

  • That's 2.7 million more people who will travel for the unofficial start of summer in comparison to 2022, which could be indicators of what's to come, Axios' Sareen Habeshian writes.

Details: Top tourist destinations in the U.S. this Memorial Day weekend include: Orlando, Florida, along with New York City and Las Vegas, AAA booking data shows. European cities are the most popular for international destinations, including Rome; Paris; Dublin; London; Barcelona, Spain and Athens, Greece.


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