Summer air travel to reach all-time high this year

Those flying this summer season should prepare for longer lines at airports, as air travel is expected to reach an all-time high.

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Airlines for America, the trade organization for U.S. airlines, expects a record 246.1 million passengers, or 2.68 million per day, to travel on American air carriers between June 1 and Aug. 31. That figure is a 3.7% increase from the previous year’s record of 237.3 million.

“As the economy grows along with household net worth, passengers are taking advantage of persistently low airfares for their summer travel plans,” Airlines for America Vice President and Chief Economist John Heimlich said.

In order to prepare for the increased demand, airlines have added 116,000 seats per day to accommodate the 96,000 additional daily passengers. Some airlines have already added more flights – both internationally and domestically – to their schedules, making sure they are fully staffed at airports and are preparing for the ultimate disruptor: weather.

Travelers make their way up the arrival ramp at the Tom Bradley International Terminal at the Los Angeles International Airport Thursday, June 29, 2017, in Los Angeles. After months of wrangling, tighter restrictions on travel to the U.S. from six mo

“That’s always going to be the No. 1 issue that we have to deal with during the summer months – just that unpredictability of those pop-up thunderstorms,” American Airlines spokesman Ross Feinstein told FOX Business, adding that the airline has bolstered its mobile app to help customers whose flights are disrupted.

The amount of daily seats departing from U.S. airports has climbed to an all-time high of more than three million, up 3.3% year-over-year. International markets have also seen an increase in scheduled seats from American airports, rising more 6% to Europe and more than 4% to both Mexico and the Central and South America regions.