THE busy holiday travel season is underway at Lynden Pindling International Airport (LPIA) with officials anticipating an estimated 85,000 passengers will move through the airport’s facilities between mid-December and New Year’s Day.
With anticipated heavy traffic in and around the terminals, Jan Knowles, Vice President of Marketing and Communications at Nassau Airport Development Company (NAD), is encouraging travellers to pack some patience and plan ahead when flying to or from Nassau.
“We’re seeing our numbers pick up as people start making their way home for the holidays or heading to Nassau to celebrate Christmas in The Bahamas,” Ms Knowles said. “We know that getting to their destination is what matters most to our passengers and we want to ensure that their experience in the airport is as stress-free as possible.
“All of our airport stakeholders have dedicated time and resources to improving passenger movement and overall operations from the kerbside to the airside.”
Technology like Automated Passport Control (APC) kiosks in US Customs, an Electronic Boarding Pass (EBP) system for check-in via mobile devices and electronic call-up features in Bahamas Immigration and Bahamas Customs reduce overall wait times for travellers.
To break up the monotony and add some holiday cheer, officials have introduced a holiday experience programme complete with live entertainment, caricaturists, face-painting, in-terminal games, shopping specials and visits from Santa.
Ms Knowles offered additional tips on travelling through LPIA during the holiday peak period.
Confirm travel details in advance
Several days before your flight, check your reservation, determine baggage specifications and see what your airline offers for onboard service.
Give yourself ample time
Anticipate extra hustle and bustle at the airport. Check-in at least three hours early for US-bound flights and two hours early for international departure flights. This gives ample time to clear security and head to the gate area with time to shop, dine, relax and enjoy airport amenities.
Many airlines offer passengers the option of online check-in and mobile boarding passes. Download all relevant apps and electronic travel documents before you leave for the airport.
Choose to travel outside peak departure times
Early morning and evening flights are considered off-peak.
Restrictions still apply for liquids, aerosols and gels so remember the 3-1-1 rule: 3.4 ounces or less per container for liquids, gels or aerosols; packed in 1 quart-sized clear plastic zip-top bag; limit of 1 bag per passenger.
Be sure to bring the right ID for your trip, or you won’t be going far! This includes a valid passport and for local travellers heading to the US, a visa or a police record issued within the last six months.
Take advantage of the wait in security lines by placing coins, keys and any small metal items in the screening bin, removing jackets and outerwear and unpacking your laptop from its bag. Leave gifts unwrapped. They may be opened for inspection as part of the baggage screening process and be sure to wear comfortable clothing and shoes that can be easily removed.
Check the airport website www.nassaulpia.com for the latest updates on flight schedules and information on parking, in terminal services or new security regulations and procedures. Connect with LPIA on social media at www.facebook.com/NassauAirport and on Twitter and Instagram @nassau_airport. Also, be sure to follow your individual airline carriers on social media for more specific flight details.