August 3, 2020

Going home for the holidays

posted on: Thursday November 8, 2001

by Mike Speight
News Staff

The approaching holiday season promises a great deal of complications for PC students who plan on flying home. Despite the September 11th terrorist attacks, though, most students plan to keep their plans of flying home for Thanksgiving and Christmas. While the terrorist attacks mean that airport security has increased greatly and many Americans are still too wary to fly, this has not grounded the majority of PC students. “I have no real unusual concerns,” said Ryan Haddad ’03. “Basically I feel that this is as safe a time as any to fly. All in all, I feel quite confident about security measures taken over the holiday season.” This sentiment was echoed by other PC students. “At first I had some anxiety about flying, but now that the hysteria has died down it’s not as big a deal. It seems like they’ve stepped up the security measures, and it makes you feel a whole lot better about flying,” commented Ryan Boyle ’02. This confidence in college students seems to be a nationwide occurrence. In a poll taken by collegeclub.com, 93% of students surveyed claimed they would not change their plans at all in the face of recent events. A poll taken by AAA showed that only 70% of adults will not change the holiday plans they had prior to September 11th. Anxiety over flying is not the only difficulty traveling students will have to contend with, there may also be a competition for seats. Attendance on flights nationwide has decreased sharply because of the terrorist attacks. As a result, airlines are scheduling fewer flights. Travel agents have warned that about 20% of flights from some airlines have been cut so they advise anyone who plans to fly to make their arrangements quickly before all the flights are booked. Other forms of transportation, like AMTRAK and bus services, are hoping to take advantage of travelers paranoia about flying by offering special rates on their services. “It’s probably safer to fly now because all of the trouble is on the ground,” responded Dan Cancelliere ’03, alluding to the threats against the bridges in California and the anthrax attacks in New York and Washington. Finally, there are many new security regulations which will inevitably mean long delays for travelers. The Federal Airline Administration is advising travelers flying domestically to allow at least 2 hours in order to comply with all the new regulations. For those traveling overseas, they suggest arriving 3 hours in advance. Other new procedures include allowing security guards to search any suspicious person as well as their baggage and forbidding passengers from taking more than a carry-on bag and one other item (like a briefcase) on to the plane. Furthermore, travelers must show their ticket when they enter the airport. Anyone without proof that they are boarding a flight that day will not be allowed on the plane. Finally, they suggest keeping an identification handy as all passengers will be asked to show theirs frequently. Despite the recent events and all of the new security procedures, most PC students are confident enough to fly and enjoy the holiday season, including Matt Cleary ’04 who explained, “It’s pretty safe to fly now. With all of the precautions it is probably the safest time to fly.” Sources:projo.com, expedia.com

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