Busiest Holiday Season Ever at Florida’s Busiest Airport, Orlando International

Press Release

ORLANDO, FL. – The 2018 Christmas / New Year’s holiday travel season will be extremely busy at Florida’s busiest airport, Orlando International. More than 2.7 million passengers are predicted, which shatters the previous holiday record, set last year, by 6 percent. These numbers are despite the fact that the travel period is two days shorter, down from 21 to 19 days this year, December 21st – January 8th, 2019.

“Unlike last year, travelers will not see a lot of construction taking place inside the main terminal building,” says Phil Brown, Chief Executive Officer of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority. “We have finished our ticket counter renovations, completed phase one of the checkpoint expansion projects and enhanced our wayfinding and signage. All of which are designed to make for a better holiday travel experience.”

2018 Projected Busiest Days / Passenger Totals

1) Sunday, December 30th 162,264
2) Sunday, January 6th 155,034
3) Wednesday, January 2nd 154,688
4) Saturday, December 29th 152,652
5) Sunday, December 23rd 150,812
6) Tuesday, January 1st 150,686
7) Monday, January 7th 150,428
8) Friday, December 28th 148,908
9) Thursday, January 3rd 148,906
10) Saturday, January 5th 147,732
11) Thursday, December 27th 146,286
12) Wednesday, December 26th 145,232
13) Saturday, December 22nd 144,912
14) Tuesday, January 8th 142,240
15) Monday, December 31st 137,738
16) Friday, December 21st 137,374
17) Friday, January 4th 124,760
18) Monday, December 24th 114,506
19) Tuesday, December 25th 112,046

Changes at MCO for travelers in 2018:

  • Renovated ticket lobbies:
    • More than 700 state-of-the-art digital display screens have been installed behind new ticket counters to display essential airline information for passengers
    • More airline user-friendly kiosks installed to enhance the customer experience
  • Enhanced Wayfinding:
    • New easier to read and understand signage throughout the main terminal building
    • “Annie the Astronaut” character deployed on signage to assist with wayfinding
    • New Art Flooring to help identify the various quadrants of the main terminal building
  • Expanded Security Checkpoints:
    • The first phase of the west security checkpoint expansion has added four new lanes
    • The east security checkpoint has added two new lanes
  • Enhanced Customer Experience:
    • Daily entertainment during the holiday travel season. Entertainment ranges from local singers to the Dicken’s Carolers to the Orlando Ballet
  • Parking Updates:
    • After a full year of operation, the “C” parking garage is fully functional, helping to provide parking relief for travelers who would normally park in the “A” or “B” garages
    • “C” garage parking is $17 per day, which is $2 less expensive than parking in the “A” or “B” garages
  • International Biometrics:
    • Many international arrivals and departures will experience the convenience of biometric facial recognition. Orlando International was one of the first airports in the nation to employ this state-of-the-art technology that allows travelers to process through customs and board flights much faster.

Travel Tips and Reminders:

  • Arrive at the airport at least 2-hours prior to your scheduled flight
  • Follow the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) 3-1-1 rules for carrying liquids and gels in your carry-on luggage. 3.4 ounces or less, 1 quart zip top bag, 1 bag per passenger
  • Do NOT bring weapons. Firearms are only allowed in checked luggage and must be unloaded and placed in special travel containers
  • Do NOT wrap Christmas gifts. They could be inspected by the TSA
  • If traveling with a pet or comfort animal, bring a leash. The pet will need to be on a leash while the animal carrier is properly screened
  • If traveling with a comfort pet please check with your airline in advance to learn their specific rules for travel with various types of animals
  • Pack as lightly as possible
  • Wear easily removable shoes
  • Do NOT make light-hearted jokes about security or secure situations
  • Please pack your patience! You are traveling with 2.7 million other passengers at MCO

Basic MCO information:
Ranked by J.D. Power “Highest in Customer Satisfaction for Mega Airports” in 2017 & 2018. With more than 46 million annual passengers, MCO is the busiest airport in Florida and 11th busiest in the U.S. MCO has 21,000 badged employees and generates more than $31 billion in revenue for the regional economy. Orlando International Airport strives to value and delight its customers through an airport-wide design concept known as The Orlando Experience®.