UPDATE Tuesday, Oct. 1: As of today, the government is officially shut down.
Monday, Sept. 30: Will Congress act in time to avoid a “government shutdown”? We’ll find out at midnight tonight (Monday, Sept. 30). But even if services are cut-back or curtailed, it probably won’t affect most travelers.
Flights Not Affected
According to travel expert Rick Seaney, “Passengers may not even notice a government shutdown, at least in the short-term.” As Politico reports, most of the people closely associated with flying would remain on the job, including:
- Federal air traffic controllers
- TSA screeners
- Federal safety inspectors
As Seaney notes, “Air travel will remain as safe as always and consumers don’t have to worry about things such as flight delays, or even delays in matters like getting a passports or visa, for now anyway.”
Popular Parks and Destination Closures
Travelers do have to be concerned about certain destinations, though. A shut-down would close all U.S. national parks such as Yosemite and Yellowstone and much more, including:
- Smithsonian Museums
- National Zoo in Washington, D.C.
- Visitor centers at the Statue of Liberty, the Washington Monument and Independence Hall in Philadelphia
UPDATE: The advocacy group A4A (Airlines for America) released the following statement: “A governmental shutdown harms our economy and all businesses, including the airline industry, and we urge Congress and the Administration to reach an agreement quickly to avoid further impacting the nascent economic recovery. At this point, we do not expect airline operations to be impacted as we have been advised by the FAA, TSA and CBP that front-line employees would not be subject to shutdown-related furloughs that would affect the traveling and shipping public.”