200,000 Expected at Lindbergh Field This Week, Despite Travel Concerns

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Despite staggering COVID-19 numbers, people are still traveling for the holidays.

Airport officials said on Wednesday that they think about 200,000 people will fly in and out of San Diego during the next four days.

Travelers at Lindbergh Field told NBC7 they would not give up going home for Christmas despite the COVID-19 warnings over the PA every 20 minutes and despite the health department discouraging nonessential travel.

Travelers like Eddie Trapps are taking a risk for the holidays.

"I'm going to San Jose California to visit my granddaughters," Trapps said, adding, "to be frank about it, the grandkids are only going to be little kids, little girls, for just a short span in their life."

Air travelers are required to wear a face covering while on airport property. If they don't have it, they can get one at the information desks.

"Doubling up cloth masks and N95's," Krishna Rhapari said. "I have sunglasses when I am inside, so my eyes are protected."

Visitors are being told to social distance, cover sneezes and coughs, and wash their hands frequently -- and to check their temperature before arriving at the airport.

"We wear masks, use sanitizer and wash our hands," Eric Beelair said. "We're as safe as we can be."

Even with all these precautions, some passengers are going about their visits with some trepidation.

"You never know who is wearing a mask and who’s not, so it's kind of scary when you're sitting next to someone who refuses to wear one," Rhapari said.

The California Department of Public Health is urging out-of-state and out-of-country visitors to self-quarantine for 14 days after their arrival, which is just the right amount of time for Beelair.

"Relax, enjoy time with the family,” Beelair said.

Lindbergh Field is stepping up its hygiene game, with increased cleaning of high-traffic touch points, electrostatic spraying, seat separation, hand-sanitizer stations and plexiglass sneeze guards.

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