PEI

Charlottetown not experiencing long waits seen at other airports — at least for now

As summer approaches and air travel starts to ramp up again, travellers are experiencing long waits and confusion at some airports.

Charlottetown Airport bracing for busy summer

Charlottetown Airport officials are reminding travellers to brush up on the rules to help avoid further delays. (Steve Bruce/CBC)

As summer approaches and air travel starts to ramp up again, travellers are experiencing long waits and confusion at some airports.

"Toronto was very difficult," Linda Smith said after arriving at the Charlottetown Airport on Wednesday.

"It took us about an hour to get off the airplane, and then it took us probably an hour and a half to get through security and customs. And then we had to overnight in Toronto because there was no direct flight home."

Linda Smith says it took about an hour to get off the airplane in Toronto. (Steve Bruce/CBC)

The Charlottetown Airport generally has continued to run smoothly, but CEO Doug Newson expects it to get busy soon — especially with a record number of flights expected to land on P.E.I. this summer.

Show up early

"It's going to be busy in terms of how many people we'll be processing at certain times of day. So there could be lineups at check-in, there could be lineups at security … We just want people not to show up 45 minutes prior to their flight and expect to just walk on the airplane and not cause any delays." 

Newson is part of the Canadian Airports Council, which says random testing and health-screening questions for international travellers are slowing things down.

It's calling on Ottawa to get rid of them.

Newson worries those requirements and delays may deter some people from returning to travel, which will hurt the Island's tourism industry.

Excited for season

After a couple years of not flying, Newson said some travellers may have forgotten some of the rules, such as what is permitted in carry-on luggage.

Brushing  up on those rules ahead of time will help prevent extra delays, he said.

"We're excited about the summer season, but it is going to come with some challenges around our infrastructure."

With files from Steve Bruce

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