Airport officials on Thursday said they expect 1.85 million passengers to use Los Angeles International Airport during the Thanksgiving holiday a 3 percent increase over last year.

Los Angeles World Airports, the agency that runs LAX and three regional airports, said it expects air travel to rise in part as a result of new airlines beginning service and existing airlines adding destinations since last year.

The agency also said it expects the number of passengers at L.A./Ontario International Airport to jump 5 percent from last year to 210,000 during the ten-day Thanksgiving holiday period that runs from Nov. 16 through Nov. 25.

Officials, who announced the numbers at the recently reopened Encounter restaurant inside the LAX Theme Building, also touted the new Flyaway bus routes and expanded wireless Internet access inside the terminals.

Separately on Thursday, President Bush announced a series of steps the government will take this holiday season to reduce flight delays and improve the flow of air traffic across the country. The new measures include increasing the fees airlines must pay travelers who are bumped from their flights, delaying nonessential airport projects and opening some unused military airspace for commercial travel.

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