Mixed feelings for MSP travelers amid flight cancellations, COVID-19 testing issues

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Some travelers packed their patience on one of the busiest holiday travel days of the season.

Doris Dunna, who lives in Minnesota, was supposed to be in Liberia starting a long-awaited vacation, but instead, she’s stuck at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport after a flight cancellation.

“I work with COVID so I just wanted somewhere that I can rest,” Dunna said.

She needs a negative COVID-19 test within 24 hours of boarding the plane.

Since her international flight was canceled yesterday, her test already expired.

“I’m going to go upstairs and get the COVID test. It’s $200 and money I didn’t plan for,” Dunna said.

Now, she’s planning on possibly staying in Minneapolis because the turnaround time is too tight.

“This is it for me. If I can’t make the flight, I’m canceling the whole trip because it’s just too much,” Dunna said.

Despite long lines and cancellations, some travelers said they’re optimistic.

“I’m pretty positive I’m going to make it,” Jonathan Flores de Leon, traveler, said.

Flores de Leon is headed to Europe.

He’s killing time in the Twin Cities during his layover.

“Surprisingly it’s not as busy and if you have TSA precheck it’s almost like really quickly,” he said.

Travelers who canceled plans last year are making up for lost time this holiday season.

AAA predicts more than 6 million people will board planes this year, which is triple the amount last year.

“So right now it’s less craziness,” Lucious Griffin, traveler, said.

Griffin said in his experience traveling later in the day beats the crowds and planning ahead equals stress-free travel.

“I always suggest to people to just figure everything out before you fly,” Griffin said.

Griffin said making it back home is his favorite part of every trip.

“It’s a blessing because you don’t want to be gone for too long,” he said.