BUSINESS

LAX predicts a record in summer travelers: 24.6 million

The busiest day at LAX is expected to be July 27

Los Angeles International Airport is expected to be even more crowded than usual this summer when it serves a record 24.6 million passengers.

The nation's second-busiest airport is expected to host 6.7% more travelers than last year's record of 23 million fliers, according to airport officials.

The summer season will begin with a crush of travelers over the Memorial Day weekend -- an estimated 811,000 flyers, an increase of 6.7% over the same weekend last year.

The busiest day of the summer is expected to be Monday, July 27, roughly the middle of the travel season, with a projected 245,000 passengers, a single-day record for LAX.

Travel experts attribute the surge in travelers to the availability of more airline seats, with carriers relying more heavily on larger jets, and the increase in tourism from Asia. Also, the favorable exchange rate for the U.S. dollar against the euro makes travel to Europe more affordable, travel experts say.

The Auto Club of Southern California predicted that the highest number of Southern Californians in a decade will travel for Memorial Day weekend, partly because of better economic numbers and stronger consumer confidence. 

In addition to the larger crowds at LAX, ongoing construction projects may make the airport even more difficult to navigate than usual.

"Over the summer, we are trying to reserve construction for the overnight and late night periods," LAX spokeswoman Nancy Suey Castles said.

To read more about travel, tourism and the airline industry, follow me on Twitter at @hugomartin.

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