The Federal Aviation Administration is preparing for a busy Thanksgiving holiday travel week by working with the Department of Defense to clear the way for commercial aircraft to fly in airspace normally reserved for the military.
“We want to do everything we can to make it easier for people to travel so they can spend Thanksgiving with their loved ones,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. “We appreciate the military’s help in making this happen.”
Air traffic controllers may begin routing commercial aircraft through the restricted airspace at 6 a.m. EST on Tuesday, November 23, a day earlier than in previous years. The use of restricted airspace will end at 6 a.m. EST on Monday, November 29. The busiest travel days are expected to be Tuesday, Wednesday and Sunday.
Under the agreement, DOD will release airspace off the east coast above 24,000 feet. The added capacity is expected to ease delays during one of the busiest travel periods of the year, saving time and money for passengers and airlines while reducing fuel burn.