The number of travelers heading in and out of San Jose’s Mineta International Airport has been on a steady increase as the pandemic eases. SJC is expecting more than 400,000 airline passengers to travel through the gates over the Thanksgiving travel period, which spans 11 days. To help deal with parking congestion, the airport has laughed a new, online parking reservation system for Economy Lot 1, one of its long-term parking lots near Terminal A.
As KRON4 reports, the new parking system is part of a full upgrade of state-of-the-art parking features at the airport including license plate recognition technology and touchless entry and exit thanks to a new QR-code kiosk system. People who reserve spots using the new system will receive 15% off the typical $18-per-day rate. The airport has set aside 10% of the parking spaces in Economy Lot 1 for the new, online reservations.
“A stress-free trip begins with planning at home. This new online parking reservation system takes the worry out of airport parking, offering travelers more control over their planning, and providing a more seamless total airport experience,” SJC Assistant Director of Aviation Judy Ross told the Silicon Valley Business Journal. The airport hopes to make reserved parking available in many of the other parking lots starting next year.
Auto group AAA reports that more than 53 million people will do some form of traveling this Thanksgiving, which is up a whopping 80% from last year. That means SJC’s more than 5,000 parking spaces could be in high demand. “Prior to the pandemic, record-breaking passenger traffic sometimes meant difficulty for travelers looking to secure a spot in our parking facilities. Now, as traffic returns, people can arrive with a level of certainty that they have a parking spot awaiting them at the Airport,” SJC Director of Aviation John Aitken told Silicon Valley Business Journal.
But airlines may not be expecting as big a rush as expected. According to another report by Silicon Valley Business Journal in September, airlines have scaled back their number of flights in the fourth quarter. At Mineta San Jose, 12,617 flights are expected in the fourth quarter which is almost 6% lower than what they were expecting earlier this year.