Roanoke-Blacksburg Regional Airport sees most passengers since pandemic began

Roanoke Valley News

ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) — Nearly 800 people traveled through the Roanoke-Blacksburg Regional Airport Sunday, marking the highest travel numbers through the airport since the pandemic began.

“Normally, we would have about 1,200 so again we’re running above the national average,” explained Brad Boettcher, the Director of Marketing and Air Service Development. “And I think with just a lot of families that have had kids that haven’t stayed in the region, they flew back in, and then yesterday (Sunday) was just a big day for everyone to fly out and get back home.”

Boettcher says there was also another factor contributing to the spike in passenger traffic.

“What we attribute that to is, we knew college students would be going home for the Thanksgiving break and not coming back onto campus. So I think that just drove a lot more traffic.”

Angela Petty was part of that traffic. She and her husband went to visit their daughters for the holiday.

“We went out to Missouri to see my daughters. My daughter’s husband, my son-in-law is over in Kuwait,” Petty explained.

She saw the size of Roanoke’s airport as a plus.

“Charlotte was pretty. Everyone was on top of everybody I felt, but I liked how when we went on the airplane they made you, they kind of spaced us out.”

Boettcher says he hopes to see the increase in traffic continue through December as we near other holidays, but hopes there is not a corresponding spike in COVID-19 cases.

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