US sets another pandemic high for air travel at 1.64 million

Airports are slowly getting more crowded as more Americans take airline flights

The previous pandemic high for air travel was reached just four days earlier and with the Mother's Day weekend on the way, this record is likely to be surpassed quickly as well.

Airlines began to register a pronounced uptick in bookings around mid-February, which they attribute partly to the nation's massive vaccine rollout. Leisure destinations such as beach towns and mountain regions have been the most popular, while cities favored by business travelers have lagged behind.

Airline stocks rose Friday, with American, Delta, United and Southwest all gaining between 2% and 3% in afternoon trading.