Despite recording over 450,000 new cases in the last week and nearly 8,500 deaths, air travel in the USA is soaring.

According to an official spokesperson from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), the Government body responsible for airport security screenings across the USA, last Friday 1,357,111 people passed through airport security checkpoints – a level not seen since 15 March 2020, just days after the pandemic was declared by the World Health Organisation.

Around 38.3 million people in the USA have been fully vaccinated according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (C.D.C.) reporting on Monday – not quite 12 per cent of the nation’s entire population – while around 71.1 million have had at least one vaccine dose.

The US is vaccinating its population at a much faster rate than Australia – according to the New York Times’ monitoring of the vaccine roll out, which takes into account C.D.C. figures, an average of 2.43 million shots are being given a day, compared to less than 200,000 shots administered in total in Australia since vaccinations began here in February.

However, on the day the largest travel spike in almost a year was recorded, the same TSA spokesperson was tweeting about the installation of acrylic shields at US airports “to help protect passengers and workforce from the coronavirus”.