TAMPA (FOX 13) - Terrorist attacks on Brussels, Belgium have many Bay Area travelers evaluating their plans and what canceling a vacation could mean on a larger scale.
As time ticked toward the start of Gina Morales' trip to Paris, the vacation she's had planned for almost a year is taking on a different meaning.
"I haven't been on vacation in three years, so this is a very long time coming. I started planning for this trip about a year ago," she said Tuesday.
Tuesday morning, Morales woke up to startling news: a brutal attack in Brussels left dozens of people dead.
"Considering my flight into Charles De Gaulle Airport in Paris is right next to Belgium, it literally gave me such a rock in my stomach. And you know, you're not human if you don't feel a little nervous," Morales said.
The sentiment was shared by people waiting for loved ones to return from Europe at Tampa International Airport Tuesday.
"I think it's just tragic. Less nervous than I am irritated and angry that this kind of thing can happen to innocent people who have no idea of where they can go, where they can be safe," said George Ridler, whose wife was flying in from Peru.
Tampa International Airport officials said airport security was heightened in the wake of the attacks. It comes during the airport's busiest time of year, with an estimated 2.5 million more passengers making their way through terminals for spring break.
"Passengers are going to see an increased presence of uniformed police officers in public areas, and also an increased presence of TSA agents and K9 units around the airport," Tampa International Airport spokesperson Emily Nipps said Tuesday.
It's not the way Morales imagined her trip would begin when she started planning a year ago. Still, she says nothing will deter her from seeing the beauty of travel.
"They want you to change your plans and be scared. I'm not going to allow that kind of control over my life. I think that's giving in to them," Morales said.
Tampa International Airport says it is not seeing any delays through security right now, but if you are flying internationally, give yourself at least three hours to work your way to your gate. Also, make sure to check with the airline to confirm there are not any changes to your flight status.