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San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport seeing an increase in travelers

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Posted at 6:19 PM, Nov 23, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-23 22:52:06-05

Officials at the San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport say they are seeing an expected amount of traffic with no major setbacks so far during this Thanksgiving travel season.

Travelers shared what they've seen on their way across the country.

“Dallas. Dallas was crowded,” said Nicholas Bollmann, visiting from Michigan.

“A little bit but not terrible, but the plane was full. We had no problems, we had no issues whatsoever,” said Corrine Appelbaum, San Luis Obispo resident.

“Columbus was extremely busy, and I had a layover in Dallas that was super busy, but SLO wasn’t too bad," said Sarah Allen, visiting from Columbus, Ohio.

“It’s a heck of a lot better than dealing with Los Angeles International that’s for sure,” said visitor Mark Rabinowitz.

Carel Mendonca is picking up her grandson from Arizona and was surprised by the number of people in the airport but says there haven’t been long lines or wait times.

“Well, we’ve picked him up before and it’s been empty and this is really busy. I was just commenting to my husband that it’s really, really busy for this small town,” said Carel Mendonca, visiting from the Central Valley.

Airport officials say it has been slightly busier this year than in years past, with numbers showing that, "in October 2022, the total passenger count for the airport was 54,276, up 27.3% from the prior year."

“This year, we’re definitely busier. We’re projecting that we’ll be a record-hitting year this year so that’s exciting for the airport,” said Courtney Pene, San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport Deputy Director of Planning and Outreach.

Those traveling on the roads say traffic hasn’t been too bad so far.

“We came down on Tuesday and traffic was pretty light,” said Jeff Cash, visiting from the Sacramento area.

“I’ve been doing deliveries and stuff and it’s been a little hectic with the traffic but I mean, it’s not too bad,” said Odin Esgueirra, San Luis Obispo resident.

“Roads and traffic have been really good. Easy coming up here. We’re about to head back and beautiful day out,” said William McNabb, Lompoc resident.

“I’m just traveling a short distance from Santa Barbara to San Luis and I know better than to travel after 3:00, between 3:00 and 5:00 down the 101," said Violet Sage Walker, Santa Barbara resident.

But they say gas prices have made for a bit of a bumpy ride.

“Not so good, but everybody has to get gas so I can’t complain,” said Christian Monasterio, Lompoc resident.

“Over $6 here so it’s a little expensive here so I can’t complain. It is what it is," McNabb added.

“Yeah, I’m putting 50 gallons in right now so it’s way worse than it was last year,” Cash said.

Airport officials want to remind travelers to arrive two hours before their flight to ensure they have enough time to check in and go through security prior to boarding.

If you would like to test for COVID-19 prior to traveling through the San Luis Obispo Airport you can visit their website to sign up; however, there is an additional fee associated with the testing.