July 4 record travel expected… Airlines, flight attendants want stiffer penalties for unruly passengers

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Fourth of July expected to bring near record travel volumes

Nearly 1.5 million Georgians are expected to give in to wanderlust over the Independence Day holiday, which would make it the second most traveled July 4th on record and comes just months after the number of COVID-19 cases in the state hit a peak with thousands crammed into the state’s hospitals.

This year’s AAA projection marks a rebound of 33% from traffic last year when the coronavirus kept many of the state’s residents at home, though not as many as elsewhere in America. It’s a mere 1.5% shy of the record number of Georgians who traveled in 2019.

Nationally, more than 47.7 million Americans are expected to travel from July 1-5, according to projections released Tuesday by the auto club, a 40% bounce-back from 2020 levels. The number of road trips, in particular, is expected to hit a record for the holiday.

“Travel is back this summer,” Debbie Haas, AAA’s vice president of travel, said in a written statement.

‘It’s out of control.’ Airlines, flight attendants want stiffer penalties for unruly passengers

  • The FAA has received about 3,000 reports of unruly traveler behavior on airplanes, a record.

  • Flight attendants have pushed carriers to delay returning alcohol sales to coach cabins.

  • Lawmakers have raised alarms and at least one senator is working on a bill to address the issue.

A JetBlue Airways flight bound for New York returned to the Dominican Republic in early February after a passenger allegedly refused to wear a facemask, threw an empty alcohol bottle and food, struck the arm of one flight attendant, and grabbed the arm of another.

The Federal Aviation Administration, which detailed the incident in a report, slapped the passenger with a $32,750 fine.

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