SAN Airport Expects Busiest Summer Since 2019

Jul 03, 2024

Passengers Urged to Plan Ahead during Independence Day Holiday


SAN DIEGO, CA — June 24, 2024–San Diego International Airport (SAN) is expecting to see more passengers this summer than any time since 2019. With the upcoming Independence Day holiday and construction on the new Terminal 1 (New T1) in full swing, the airport encourages travelers and those picking up and dropping off to plan ahead.

“We are about one month into the summer holiday travel season and already we are seeing some of the highest numbers since the pandemic,” said Kimberly Becker, San Diego County Regional Airport Authority President and CEO.  “Memorial Day traditionally kicks off the busy summer travel season and we expect the number of passengers at SAN to continue to increase during this upcoming holiday and throughout the summer. Since Independence Day falls in the middle of the week, we expect both weekends before and after the holiday to be busy travel days.”

Independence Day holiday travel at SAN is expected to begin Friday, June 28 through Sunday, July 7. During this 10-day period, an average of 750,000 to 780,000 passengers are estimated to arrive and depart from SAN. This is a 5 to 7 percent increase compared to this time last year and a 3 to 5 percent increase compared to 2019. The busiest travel days are expected to be Sunday, June 30 and Sunday, July 7. The single busiest travel day is expected to be Sunday, July 7.

Below are suggested tips for travelers coming through SAN during the summer months:

Check your flight status . Before coming to the airport, be sure to check with your airline to confirm your flight time.  

Arrive early - Don’t cut it close . Expect traffic congestion due to construction in front of Terminal 1 and along the roadways near the entrance to the airport at Terminal 1 and 2. Give yourself enough time to arrive at the airport before your flight departs. Busiest times at the curbside are 4:00 a.m. to 6:15 a.m., 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and 8 p.m. to 12 a.m. Thank you for your patience during construction. Good things are coming soon.

Make parking reservations – secure your spot . Parking is currently available at the Terminal 2 Parking Plaza. Anyone planning to park at the airport should make reservations in advance. Reservations can be made for the Terminal 2 Parking Plaza or curbside valet. Make reservations here.

Traveling around SAN . If parking in the Terminal 2 Parking Plaza but flying from Terminal 1, passengers can ride the Terminal Loop Shuttle which transports passengers between the two terminals in an efficient manner.

Free electric shuttle . The San Diego Flyer is a free shuttle bus service between the Old Town Transit Station and SAN. The electric shuttle buses operate seven days a week, with an average arrival time of every 20 to 30 minutes. The first pick up is at 4:45 a.m. and the last pick up/drop off at 12:30 a.m.

Get dropped off or use a ride-share . Have friends or family drop off or pick up. Lyft, Uber, or other rideshare options are also good alternatives.

Follow the signs Whether dropping off or picking up passengers, please follow construction signage and stay within marked lanes. Be alert and ensure car doors and personal belongings are not blocking other drivers and passengers. Lastly, follow the directions of Airport Traffic Officers – they are there to ensure the safety of everyone at the airport.

Skip the traffic . Picking up? Avoid circling! The Cell Phone Lot in the Terminal 2 West Parking Lot on McCain Road is the perfect place to wait for your party. The lot is open from 5:00 a.m. to 12:30 a.m.

Once at the airport, sit back and shop, dine, and relax Shops and restaurants inside the terminals are open to provide travel necessities, meals, snacks, and more. Visit for hours and locations of SAN concessionaires.

To learn more about construction impacts, transit options, and more, visit


Owned and operated by San Diego County Regional Airport Authority (Airport Authority), San Diego International Airport (SAN) is one of the busiest single-runway commercial service airports in the world and the third-busiest airport in California. SAN contributes nearly $12 billion in economic activity for the region by connecting the world to San Diego and San Diego to the world. In November 2021, the Airport Authority began construction on the New T1 which includes the replacement of the current Terminal 1, improvements to the airfield, improved transportation connectivity to the airport, and a new administration building. The New T1’s project budget is $3.8 billion and is estimated to create between 15,000 to 20,000 construction-related jobs. For more information about the New T1 please visit For more information about SAN please visit