MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) — Myrtle Beach International Airport is reminding passengers to arrive to the airport early as security wait times have increased.
The airport is seeing a record number of travelers this summer that is expected to exceed 2019 summer numbers, which is the current record-breaking year. The airport said passengers will see longer wait times for TSA security checkpoints for the foreseeable future — especially Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
The Jacksons family vacationed in Myrtle Beach and said they brought the kids to the beach because they’d never been to Myrtle Beach before, as the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce reported a record number of visitors to the Grand Strand.
An airport worker told News13 off camera that the lines were out the door earlier Monday but have since died down. Lines were also out the door over the weekend.
One person who dropped their family off Saturday said they didn’t think they would make their flight.
“Saturday was crazy in here,” Stanley Zurek said. “It was mobbed. Our family wasn’t quite sure if they would make their flight.”
When Zurek came to drop off family members again Monday, he said there was a big difference in the wait time.
“That security line went all the way down into baggage claim so it was a zoo,” Zurek said. “Today it’s nothing. This is incredible.”
An airport spokesperson sent News13 the following statement:
“Myrtle Beach International Airport is expecting a very busy summer, with the number of arriving/departing passengers traveling through the airport expected to exceed that of summer 2019, the current record-breaking year. The increase in passengers traveling through MYR has resulted in longer wait times for processing through the TSA security checkpoint and is expected to continue for the foreseeable future, particularly during the busy weekend travel days of Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. All travelers are encouraged to arrive at the airport a minimum of two (2) hours prior to their scheduled departure time so as to avoid missing their flight and enjoy a stress free travel experience.”
A record number of passengers flew through the airport in May. In 2019, 1.3 million passengers traveled through Myrtle Beach International Airport and it expects to see nearly that same amount just in the summer months this year.
“You’re seeing it now, we’re seeing it at the beaches, we’re seeing it at the restaurants,” Zurek said.
Passengers should arrive at least two hours before their scheduled departure time.