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Travel sees significant increase for first time in months; experts urge caution

The Thanksgiving holiday is helping revive travel, but health officials say the pandemic is far from over.

ATLANTA — At the world’s busiest airport Sunday, travelers are still flying to their destinations for Thanksgiving.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) reports more than one million people passed through their checkpoints last Friday. This is only the second time hitting that threshold since March and a 15 percent increase over the week before.

Shannon Smith from Baltimore said, like other travelers, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines are sticking points with her this holiday.

“They’re appropriate. They should’ve been this strict all the time until we know better,” she said.

The Georgia Department of Public Health and CDC guidelines fall in line with each other, recommending Americans celebrate with those who live in their home only

For Smith and her friend Jakki Rembert in Atlanta, these guidelines are personal. Smith was in Atlanta with Rembert at a funeral with safety rules for their close friend who recently died from COVID-19.

“This was our Thanksgiving -- saying goodbye to our friend. It brought us all together. It was the only risk we’re willing to take,” said Rembert.

If you are traveling, experts have a few suggestions to stay safe.

They say get tested as close to departure as possible. Isolate before and after you travel and test again once you arrive. But, experts caution testing is not foolproof.

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