Plan Ahead — Thanksgiving Travel

Alicia Cross
November 17, 2017

USA motorists will take 45.5 million trips this holiday, a 1.5 percent increase over past year and also the most since 2005, even though gas prices are at their highest since 2014, AAA said.

"Across the country, and in Maryland, this Thanksgiving weekend is expected to be the busiest for the holiday in more than 10 years", said AAA Mid-Atlantic spokeswoman Ragina Cooper Averella in a statement. It mirrors a 3.3 percent increase expected nationwide, to almost 51 million Americans.

Most of them, 2.3 million, will take a road trip between Wednesday and Sunday next week, AAA said.

The increase comes at a time when gas prices are up more then 40 cent from past year. Many Green Bay Packers fans may also be traveling to Pittsburgh, to see the team take on the Steelers.

For those traveling the roads, a gallon of regular gas in MA averages $2.59 a gallon. Americans on average are paying $2.56 at the pump, and Virginians have seen an average increase of 30 cent across the state from past year.

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The AAA poll says a strong economy and high consumer confidence are contributing to the desire to travel, or at least provide the finances.

Springfield averages $2.54 a gallon, according to AAA.

Most travellers - about 90 per cent, or 45.5 million people - will be on the road; a 3.2 per cent increase in automobile traffic over last year's holiday, according to the pre-holiday analysis.That's despite a higher national average for petrol prices over last year. At $157, on average, that is a 23 percent fare drop year-over-year.

In the Mountain region (Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, and Wyoming), travel volume is expected to top 3.7 million during this period, experts said. "These factors are fueling a confident consumer, who is expected to maintain a high level of spending that should drive an increase in holiday travel".

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