Memorial Day weekend busy travel rush marks a return to normalcy after state pandemic restrictions lifted


WINDSOR LOCKS, Conn. (WTNH) — Busy, yes. Hectic, long lines, sure. But at Bradley International Airport they’re adding more flights, and more routes, even a new airline, to accommodate the pent-up demand for travel post-pandemic.

Monday night, the highway was winding down from holiday traffic, after the long three-day weekend going up against the wind and rain.

Travelers we spoke to Monday say they are almost glad to see the traffic, the taillights, and the stop-and-go traffic after over a year of being home due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The flight was good you know, it was definitely crowded and very crowded in the small connection plane, they were very stuffy and everything,” David Chambers of Tampa, FL told News 8 Monday.

So, Memorial Day highway travel was bumper-to-bumper on Friday. But now as you look back at the highway, it’s kind of calm down. There is a lot of volumes, but not as much stop and go especially as everybody isn’t coming back at the same time.

State Troopers encourage drivers to be careful because it may look clear one minute, but up around the corner rainstorms could come and go so quickly and traffic can come to a halt without any warning.

“Oh, it was crowded definitely. It was a full house, but I loved it! It was nice out there, and it seemed like everybody was traveling for the holidays, and it seems like everything went back to normal,” said Jaclyn Leahy of Hartford.

“Do you have to be super careful, people are in a hurry. I don’t know why, but they are in a hurry. I wasn’t in a hurry so I took my time coming here,” Bob Pericolosi of Marlboro.

And while the numbers aren’t in yet on accidents and fatalities for the Memorial Day weekend, it seems like many people were being super careful and taking it easy. Or riding the bus. Most buses were on time, despite the traffic and the mood upbeat.

“People didn’t travel last year, and so they just didn’t travel, so they have all this pent-up energy, and you want to go somewhere, so I just decided I wanted to get out. I am vaccinated, so I was less concerned about COVID on the buses, the bus was fine coming here, and I’m sure it will be fine going back,” Nora Frederickson of Boston.

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