The expected Good Friday rush at the country’s busiest airports has passed after fears Easter holiday travellers would be greeted by more of the chaos that has engulfed most terminals this week.
Sydney Airport said people had been passing through security inside 45 minutes as large queues moved smoothly.
Customers had been warned to arrive three hours ahead of their flights as airports around the country expected to remain busy over the break and school holiday period.
Around 80,000 passengers are expected to depart Sydney on Friday and they are being advised to arrive two hours early for flights.
“Queues expected to ease towards midday and peak again into the afternoon,” Sydney Airport tweeted on Friday.
Over the course of the morning, social media users reported large lines but smooth processing at both Sydney and Melbourne airports.
It follows days of chaos at airports around the country with staff shortages due to COVID-19 isolation rules a major factor in the delays.
For much of Thursday queues and wait times at Sydney Airport were hours long but eased later in the day.
Melbourne will handle 76,000 passengers each day over the Easter period while Adelaide is anticipating 25,000 on Friday.
Monday will be Hobart’s busiest-ever day for flights, with more than 81 planes coming and going.
With the relaxing of coronavirus restrictions, Australians are set to spend $7.1 billion this holiday season, according to research conducted by Roy Morgan.
More than four million Australians are planning a trip away this Easter, with 63 per cent travelling within their own state and more than one third heading interstate.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison was delighted to see the tourism industry bouncing back, but said people should also expect some travel congestion.
“These are days we were looking forward to during this pandemic,” he said on Thursday.
“There are going to be some setbacks as the staff come back in, as the system is built up again.”