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      Road and airport officials prepare for busy holiday travel

      State road officials and airport directors are anticipating a busy next few days for holiday travel, so they're taking the necessary steps to make sure that everyone gets to their destinations safely.

      The Michigan Department of Transportation says they've been preparing for months for the snowy weather. Bill Wahl, an MDOT Engineer for Operations, says they prioritize their plow and salt routes according to what roads receive the heaviest traffic flow.

      "It defines how we're going to work on each of these routes," said Wahl. "From a basic stand point, if it's snowing we're going to be out there working on them."

      County road officials feel the same and say they have plenty of salt, and sand to clear the roads and get travelers to their destinations safely.

      Airports like Cherry Capital in Traverse City are also preparing for a busy weekend and say they'll be plowing the runways 24-hours a day throughout the holidays to keep everything clear for takeoff.

      "It really comes down to winds and weather and how things impact us with that," said Cherry Capital Airport Director, Kevin Klein. "So what I ask travelers to do is be patient. Show up early to the airport about 1.5 hour early and make sure you plan to get through the security lines in time. But it's being patient and knowing what's going on."

      Trip Advisor reports that 53% of travelers will be driving this year and that the numbers are up 5% compared to last year.