Wednesday, March 8, 2023

AUS prepares passengers for a busy Spring Travel Season ahead

With a slew of events heading to Austin this spring, including SXSW, Dell Match Play, NASCAR, Texas Relays, and the CMT Awards, Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) advises passengers to expect a busy terminal beginning March 8th through early April. 1,822,198 passengers traveled through AUS in March 2022 – making it the busiest March in airport history. This year, airlines are offering 10% more seats than last – poising March 2023 to top March 2022.

“We’re excited for the return of Spring Travel Season,” said Towanda Cordon, Acting Deputy Chief of Operations. “AUS has taken steps to prepare the airport for the influx of travelers during March and April by coordinating with airlines and other on-airport partners to ensure we are staffed appropriately for the period. We ask that passengers plan ahead, arrive early, use our tips and pack their patience as our teams prepare for their arrival.”

When to arrive at AUS

  • Passengers using general Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screening should arrive at least 2.5 hours before departure for domestic flights and 3 hours before departure for international flights.
  • Passengers that need to check luggage, return a rental car, or complete other activities before joining the TSA security line should arrive even earlier.
  • TSA PreCheck and Clear users can expect a faster security process than those using general TSA screening.  On-site TSA PreCheck enrollment is now offered to departing passengers after they are cleared through security through a new enrollment program, which you can learn more about here.

Security screening & packing correctly

  • AUS has 4 security screening checkpoints and all checkpoints lead to all gates. The checkpoints open at 3:00 a.m. and TSA PreCheck and Clear are available at Checkpoints 1 and 2 West.
  • AUS Department of Aviation staff will be throughout the terminal to assist passengers.
  • The TSA has reported that AUS passengers continue to bring a record number of guns to security checkpoints. Bringing prohibited items, like firearms and liquids exceeding 3.4 oz. will cause delays for passengers.
  • Passengers can visit for guidance on how to pack and what items are allowed in carry-on luggage.
  • Event promotional items, bulky souvenirs and giveaways should be packed in carry-on luggage to prevent delays in the checked baggage security screening process.

Parking and/or dropping off passengers

  • Visit if you're planning to park at AUS. You can reserve a parking space and check for real-time parking availability before arriving at the airport.
  • Passengers should budget in extra arrival time for shuttle service to the terminal as it runs approximately every 15-20 minutes.
  • Use either the upper level for departures or the lower level for arrivals to drop off passengers. And vice versa - if you're picking up someone and the lower level for arrivals is backed up, have them go to the upper-level departures and pick them up there. We recommend using whichever level is least congested.
  • Allegiant and Frontier passengers are encouraged to park on-site at the South Terminal.

Mobility assistance and accessibility needs

  • Passengers who require wheelchair assistance need to contact their airline prior to their travel date to set up the service.
  • AUS offers SkySquad, a new service which connects passengers with a trained, pre-vetted airport assistant to provide an extra pair of hands from the curbside to their gate (from ticketing, checking bags, loading items onto the security belt, keeping an eye on travel items when they go to the restroom and more). Passengers need to book 24 hours in advance. Visit the SkySquad website or call (877) 359-2256.
  • AUS has a new Mobility Lounge for passengers using wheelchairs and other mobility assistive devices located on the ticketing/departures level.
    • AUS also has a new Mobility Assistance Zone, which provides priority access for Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles (WAVs), taxis and rideshares to pick-up passengers with limited mobility. It is located on the lower level curbside one lane across from the G and H pick-up areas; it is free and open daily from 7 a.m. to 2 a.m. 
    • We also have a Mobility Assistance Tram, which transports Passengers with mobility needs via tram across the walkway between the car rental area and the terminal curbside. It operates 7 days a week.
  • Consider requesting TSA Cares Assistance. TSA Cares is a helpline that provides travelers with disabilities, medical conditions and other special circumstances additional assistance during the security screening process. Contact them at (855) 787-2227.

Checking into your flight

  • Airline ticket counters open at various times. Passengers should contact the airline directly for hours of operation.
  • Passengers without checked luggage can bypass the busy ticket counters and head immediately to TSA screening checkpoints using these time-saving flight check-in options:
    • Use a mobile boarding pass to skip the airline ticket counters.
    • Use a self-service kiosk located inside the terminal to print boarding passes.
    • In addition to traditional check-in procedures, some airlines offer outside curbside check-in on the upper level.

Getting the most out of AUS

  • Once inside, explore the food, new art installations, live music stages, and more using step-by-step directions on the AUS digital wayfinding map at
  • AUS is excited to offer a special music line-up, featuring 52 different live music performances starting Monday, March 13 through Friday. March 17.  You can view a detailed schedule of our 8 music stages on the Live Music in the Air at AUS program webpage.

Information for Allegiant and Frontier travelers: Know your terminal

  • Passengers flying Allegiant or Frontier will depart from The South Terminal, which is a separate terminal located near US 183 and Burleson Road at 10000 Logistics Lane. This terminal is not accessible from the main Barbara Jordan Terminal. While we do provide shuttle service to the terminal, we encourage Allegiant and Frontier passengers to park on-site at the South Terminal to save time.

Passengers needing assistance at any point in their journey at AUS are encouraged to call the Airport Operations Center at (512) 530-2242 or to ask any Department of Aviation staff member for assistance.