BALTIMORE (WJZ) — This Memorial Day weekend broke travel records that the U.S. hasn’t seen since the start of the pandemic. More than 700,000 Marylanders are expected to return after heading out of town for the holiday.

TSA reported nearly 2 million air travelers on Friday — the highest number reported since the beginning of the COVID-19 health crisis.

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AAA predicts a 60 percent spike in travel, both on the road and in the sky. However, with an increase In traffic, travel times are expected to about 20 percent longer than usual.

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In recent months, airlines said bookings have surged due to higher demand and COVID restrictions relaxing.  Airport officials are reminding travelers to pack their patience because longer wait times are expected.

At BWI Airport, recent data shows a steady increase in passenger traffic over recent weeks. This comes as COVID cases and more Americans get vaccinated.

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Although this holiday weekend is wrapping up, this weekend was just the unofficial start of a busy travel season.