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CHICAGO — Lines have increased over the past few days at COVID-19 testing sites in the city and suburbs.

Longer lines could be a good thing as more city leaders are pushing for people to get tested before heading out to celebrate Christmas with family and friends.

“We are in the middle of the biggest covid surge that we have seen since before vaccines were available,” Dr. Allison Arwady, Chicago Department of Public Health commissioner, said.

The rise in cases is pushing city leaders to urge everyone to get tested before celebrating Christmas with loved ones this weekend.

Chicago’s daily test positivity rate has increased to 7.3% with close to 1,800 new cases popping up each day.

Hospitalization has gone up and deaths are averaging at 11 per day.

With the omicron variant spreading rapidly throughout the country, city leaders want you to focus on getting vaccinated, boosted and tested before heading out for the holiday.

While the testing site lines are long, some believe knowing your status is worth the wait.

For those looking for take home tests, certain stores have put a limit on how many tests you can purchase.

AAA is estimating over 100 million people will travel 50 miles or more for the holidays.