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TSA: Staffing shortage could affect 1 in 3 airports during summer travel season

If you're planning to travel this summer, you may want to prepare for longer lines than usual.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Industries across the country are experiencing worker shortages as states work to recover from the coronavirus pandemic. This shortage could potentially impact your travel plans this summer.

According to ABC News, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is expecting more than 100 airports across the country to encounter staffing shortages this month. At the same time, more people are traveling as states loosen COVID-19 restrictions.

What does this mean for your next trip to the airport? You may want to budget some extra time to get to your destination.

Airports in Charlotte and Austin are already reporting longer wait times than usual, with some passengers waiting in line for up to four hours. Acting TSA Administrator Darby LaJoye told ABC that passenger volume is on the rise and they are expecting a "significant surge" in summer travel.

RELATED: CDC eases travel alerts for more than 100 countries, territories

TSA officials said they're hoping to hire 6,000 new workers nationwide, but only half of those positions have been filled so far. To entice applicants, the administration is offering incentives like $1,000 bonuses for people who sign on and office employees are being encouraged to volunteer in non-screening roles.

It's unclear if Louisville's Muhammad Ali International Airport (SDF) will be one of the airports experiencing shortages. Right now, the airport has openings listed for airport security officers online. You can see current job openings here.

But with around one-third of the nation's airports projected to be affected, you'll likely experience some longer wait times if you travel somewhere by plane this summer.


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