The crush is on: Your guide to getting away

WASHINGTON — The Tuesday before Thanksgiving may be considered the most jammed-up travel day of the run-up to Thanksgiving, but there are still plenty of people taking to the roads, the air and other forms of transportation Wednesday morning.

The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority says that you need to show up for domestic flights two hours in advance on Wednesday — three hours for international flights. As always, they say you should check with your airline about individual delays, and bring government-issued ID to the airport.

Other tips from MWAA:

  • Print your boarding pass, and pay any baggage fees at home online. And if your boarding pass reads “TSA Pre,” head to the TSA Pre line.
  • Make sure you know the rules for carry-on luggage, so you don’t get hung up in the security line — and neither does everyone behind you. The list of prohibited items is here; the size regulations are here, and the rules regarding liquids are here.
  • If you’re traveling with gifts, wrap them when you get there: Anything that’s wrapped is subject to inspection, and could be opened.
  • If you’re flying out of Reagan National Airport, you can reserve parking in advance here. And if you’re flying out of Dulles, you can check out the length of the security line here.

And don’t get smug if you’re flying later: MWAA says that full flights, long lines and loaded carry-on bins will be the norm for Sunday and Monday as everyone heads back home.

Meanwhile, WTOP’s Kathy Stewart says that traffic on Interstate 95 southbound near the Dale City rest stop was beginning to get heavy at about 10 a.m., after having been relatively smooth in the early morning.

The good news is, the Virginia Department of Transportation is suspending highway work zones during the long Thanksgiving holiday.

Lane closures will be lifted on most major roads in Virginia starting at noon on Wednesday and will continue through noon Monday.

You can keep up with the traffic situation on our Traffic page.

Amtrak trains in the Northeast Corridor are running up to about an hour late. You can check the status of individual trains on their interactive map.

The weather should be on your side for holiday travel, at least in this area, though NBC Washington meteorologist Lauryn Ricketts says there may be some rough spots nationwide. Read her coast-to-coast forecast here.

The travel forecast for Wednesday. (NBC Washington)
The travel forecast for Wednesday. (NBC Washington)
Rick Massimo

Rick Massimo came to WTOP, and to Washington, in 2013 after having lived in Providence, R.I., since he was a child. He's the author of "A Walking Tour of the Georgetown Set" and "I Got a Song: A History of the Newport Folk Festival."

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