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Tampa International Airport flight update: Few delays, cheaper parking available online

About 25 delays have been canceled so far on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving.

TAMPA, Fla. — It's so far, so good at Tampa International Airport with very few flight delays and cancellations reported just ahead of Thanksgiving.

"Very busy," Emily Nipps, a spokesperson for TPA described the scene. "So the day before Thanksgiving, we expected it to be busy. There are lots of people here, probably about 70,000 passengers will be coming through here today."

Flight-tracking website FlightAware shows, as of 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, there have been a total of 33 delays. Just one flight has been canceled. 

Broken down by airline, there's not one company that's suffering worse than others — American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Southwest Airlines and the rest each are reporting fewer than five delays.

If Thanksgiving travels take you to South Florida, perhaps bank on a delay: Miami International Airport ranks No. 1 as of this writing on FlightAware's "MiseryMap" given the number of delays reported so far today.

While the airport is crowded, it doesn't compare to last year. In 2021, 800,000 people made their way through TPA for Thanksgiving travel. This year is roughly 25,000 fewer. Why? Fewer flights.

"The airlines have cut back their schedules," Nipps said. "So we saw a lot of issues earlier this year [during] spring break, summer, with cancellations because of staffing issues. Particularly, we had so many flights coming in and out and some of them were getting canceled. We don't think that's going to be an issue this year during the holiday season because the airlines have a more appropriate schedule that's going to ensure that there are less cancellations this year."

Tampa International Airport recommends people arrive no later than two hours before their scheduled departure, or three hours for international flights, for the smoothest flying experience. 

"Our parking is extremely tight," Nipps said. "We are recommending that people get here early if they're going to be flying out two hours before departure if it's domestic flight three hours if it's international."

And while parking can be paid on-site, look online — the airport advertises cheaper rates when booked on its website.

If you're traveling Saturdays and Sundays, you won't be alone as they're expected to be busiest after Thanksgiving.

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