WINDSOR LOCKS, Conn. (WTNH) — With Labor Day weekend here, travelers are already hitting the roads and flying out to get to their destinations as families squeeze out the last days of summer.

The Labor Day travel period began on Thursday — and the airport terminal was busy — as travelers get a head start on the holiday weekend. The excitement, however, comes with higher prices as well as more concerns in the airline industry.

“Since the pandemic, we stayed put,” Tony and Benz of Shelton, who are traveling to Las Vegas, said. “Now it’s time to go.”

The husband and wife said they haven’t done much over the past couple of years, and even though this flight is costing them more than usual, they said they still chose to travel because “we’ve been waiting for this opportunity for a long time.”

Domestic flight prices over Labor Day weekend are expected to be 20 percent higher than in 2021.  The hotel you book also could be up to 32 percent higher. AAA said the desire and comfort to travel are back once again.

“Seeing own bookings traveling has picked up for international and domestic destinations,” AAA spokesperson Fran Mayko told News 8.

Airports will be packed this weekend, with over 12 million passengers expected to take flight. Planes are full and flights are booked, which is partly due to airlines reducing their flight capacity due to staffing shortages.

CAA Executive Director Kevin Dillon said that it’s a matter of getting flight crews fully staffed to “put the capacity back in and return to pre-pandemic numbers,” as low staffing forced airlines to cancel thousands of flights over the summer.

Cancellations and delays have driven about 80 percent of Labor Day travelers to the road. On their way to their destination, they’ll be paying about 65 cents less per gallon than on Memorial Day weekend.

47,000 passengers are expected to pass through their TSA security checkpoint from Thursday through Tuesday. Dillon said it’s more than last year, but still not close to pre-pandemic numbers.

However, falling gas prices are allowing more people to hit the road, but there’s a word of warning.

“Ditch those distractions. There’s also the move-over law. If you see any type of emergency vehicle. if you have the ability to move over safely, move over. If not, slow down to a speed where you can pass those emergency vehicles safely,” said Sgt. Christine Jeltema, CT State Police.

While many have opted to flee their cities and towns this holiday weekend, many others have opted for a staycation.

“We come to Hammonassset every year and we love it. So, we’re going to get every bit of summer we can,” said Melissa Toni of Averill Park, New York.