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RDU airport offers tips for uneventful holiday travel

Posted Sunday, December 19, 2004

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Morrisville, NC - Approximately 15 percent more passengers are expected to pass through Raleigh-Durham International Airport during the year-end holiday travel period, which lasts from today through Jan. 3.

Calendar year-to-date statistics reflect a nearly 9 percent increase in travel compared to 2003, airport officials said.

The busiest days of the travel period are predicted to be Thursday and Friday, just before Christmas.

Following are RDU's tips for holiday travelers:

-- Arrive early. RDU officials are recommending passengers give themselves plenty of time for parking, luggage check-in and security screening.

-- Follow the electronic signs to available parking. RDU offers motorists over 11,000 spaces within walking distance of the terminals. In addition, park-and-ride lots 3 and 4 will be open. More remote parking will be open when all other parking spaces have been filled.

-- Confirm the status of your flight before you leave home by calling your airline or checking its Web site.

-- Check in online in advance. If you have Internet access, check in with your airline by printing your boarding pass from the airline's Web site.

-- Use your airline's electronic kiosks. Passengers with electronic tickets are encouraged to use their airline's self-service kiosks to print boarding passes, choose seats and, where available, check luggage. Nine out of 10 airlines at RDU offer electronic check-in.

-- Be prepared for the security checkpoint. Before proceeding through the security checkpoint, travelers should remove coats, jackets, blazers and shoes. All metal objects should be placed in carry-on luggage. These items include cell phones, pagers, keys, large jewelry, large belt buckles and coins. Other tips for the security checkpoint include keeping boarding passes and photo IDs on hand until you have passed through the security checkpoint; removing all knives, scissors and blades of any type from your carry-on luggage (if taking these items with you, place them in your checked luggage); and leaving gifts unwrapped, as they may need to be opened and are subject to search.

-- Pay for parking with Exit Express. Motorists parking between the terminals are reminded to avoid the lines at the exit plaza by paying for parking using Exit Express.

To use the automated payment program, motorists should keep their ticket with them and pay for parking before returning to their cars.

Exit Express pay stations are located along the pedestrian walkways between the terminals and parking garages.

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