DENVER — The Denver International Airport is expecting this weekend to be some of the busiest days at the airport since the pandemic began.
On Friday morning, Alex Renteria, public information officer for the airport, said Friday and Sunday will likely see about 75,000 people on both days. DIA will open the Pikes Peak parking lot, which has stayed closed since the start of the pandemic, to allow for extra parking this weekend.
The airport's website had an alert on Sunday, warning travelers TSA security lines were long, and advised travelers to arrive two hours before their flight. However, Renteria told Denver7 that lines were around 15 minutes at each checkpoint and parking was available.
Renteria provided the below comparison of this weekend's forecasted passenger totals compared to the third weekend in October 2019:
- Friday: 74K in 2021, 76K in 2019
- Saturday: 58K in 2021, 54K in 2019
- Sunday: 77K in 2021, 73K in 2019
"We're likely to exceed our post-pandemic security screening record," DIA said in a tweet.
To learn about parking availability, visit the airport's website here. The Pikes Peak and Mount Elbert parking lots are typically closed as the airport seeks more shuttle bus drivers, but Pikes Peak shuttle lot will temporarily open for passengers to park in from 9 a.m. Friday until 5 p.m. Saturday. Only credit cards and debit cards are accepted here. The lot is located at 75th Avenue and N. Elk Street.
Once it closes at 5 p.m. on Saturday, the shuttles will continue between the terminal and the lot, though it will stay closed to entering drivers.
Passengers who use the Pikes Peak lot, which is $8 per day, should leave an extra 45 minutes to get to the terminal.
Renteria said DIA's bus contractor is looking to hire 45 drivers so the Pikes Peak and Mount Elbert lots can stay open 24/7. She said the goal is to permanently open the Pikes Peak shuttle lot before the holidays. To apply, click here.