Air traffic in Lansing is increasing as more and more people are being vaccinated

LANSING, Michigan – More and more travelers from central Michigan take to the skies as COVID-19 vaccinations surge.

“We are beginning to see that demand is rising again and that airlines are reacting,” said Robert Benstein, interim president and CEO of Capital Region International Airport.

In 2019, Capital Region International had 178,000 boardings. Last year that number dropped to 67,000.

Benstein said spring break is fueling the airport’s latest travel surge. “We’ve had some airlines actually adding some flights due to the spring break demand,” he said.

Some travelers still remember what flying was like around that time during the pandemic last year.

“It was like a ghost town,” said Paris Thompson.

Thompson believes things are slowly going back to normal.

“The busier airports like LaGuardia have been manned all the time, but at certain airports it’s the timing of the day that matters most.”

Kaisha Young, FOX 47 News

Lobby of the capital’s regional international airport.

As air travel continues to increase, according to Benstein Capital Region International, it improves its security protocols by installing some new features. The airport will soon have ionization air filters that kill germs and UV disinfectants on the escalator handrails. Contactless devices are also being built into the bathrooms at the airport.

Local health experts continue to urge people to take precautions as the COVID-19 positivity rate in Michigan rises.

Benstein assumes that travel costs will increase in the next few months

“The airlines are also seeing more bookings in the summer. I think the demand is very high and people are looking forward to getting off.”

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