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Metro Airport Packed, Computer Problems At Spirit

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air travelers1 Metro Airport Packed, Computer Problems At SpiritFor tens of thousands of people, the busy holiday weekend starts with a stop at Detroit’s Metro Airport.

Metro Detroiters are on the move — on this day before Thanksgiving. AAA Michigan expects 1.3 million turkey-loving Michiganians will be going somewhere over the holiday.

Early this morning, the first wave of passengers were making their way to the departure drop-off at Metro Airport’s McNamara Terminal. Travelers like Angie Doctor of Mt. Clemens will be off to Fargo, North Dakota to see her parents – that is – if the snowstorms in the forecast for the Upper Plains don’t keep her stranded.

“My parents will pick me up, and we’ll go to see grandma in Jamestown, North Dakota. And then, tomorrow, we’ll go to Fargo for Thanksgiving Day, if we can get there. Or, we’ll be eating at the truck stop,” Doctor told WWJ’s Ron Dewey.

Airport officials say getting to the airport early will make the trip go that much smoother.

Computer Problems At Spirit Airlines

Big headaches for Spirit Airlines travelers today, their flights delayed by a computer malfunction that had ticket agents taking luggage and passenger data by pencil and paper.

A message at Spirit’s website said “Please Stand By We’re Working On It.” There was no indication what caused the problem.

Bridget Klein of Tampa was one of the many concerned passengers looking at the flight board, her watch and the long line in front of her.

 “I’m not even checking bags, and I printed out a boarding pass, but because I didn’t have like a seat assignment, I gotta stand in this line. My flight leaves at 7:19 a.m. for Tampa, and it’s 7:18 a.m.,” Klein said.

Traveler Rachel Cortez of Ann Arbor was trying to get to Orlando for Thanksgiving with her parents, and found herself in a more unusual predicament.

Cortez was traveling with her dog Oscar, who wasn’t happy to wait in the long lines either.

“I have to try get him outside or try to get him to go to the bathroom in the people bathrooms every once in a while,” she said.

Some positive passengers managed to stay upbeat in spite of the annoying start to the day.  Leslie Heffner of Harrison Township was just excited to see her daughter in Tampa.

“I’ll get there eventually, there’s no sense in being upset ‘cause it’s not gonna change anything, you gotta do what you gotta do—it’s a holiday,” Heffner said.

At 9:15 a.m., Spirit spokeswoman Misty Pinson said in an email “All flights are departing. No flights are cancelled. We have delayed some flights a bit in order to get customers checked in.”

Click here for a link to Spirit Airlines’ web site.

As far as all the hype on the Internet about new security procedures, travelers for the most part are saying that the new body scanners and the pat-downs are really no big deal.

Complete airport and parking information can be found at WWJ.com.

Copyright, 2010. WWJ Newsradio 950, All Rights Reserved

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