AAA announced its projection that 39.3 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more away from home this Memorial Day weekend. That is 1 million more travelers than last year taking to the roads, skies, rails and water, creating the highest Memorial Day travel volume since 2005.
“The expected spike in Memorial Day travel mirrors the positive growth seen throughout the travel industry this year,” said Bill Sutherland, AAA senior vice president for travel and publishing, in the announcement. “Higher confidence has led to more consumer spending, and many Americans are choosing to allocate their extra money on travel this Memorial Day.”
The Memorial Day holiday travel period is defined as Thursday, May 25 to Monday, May 29. By the Numbers: Memorial Day Travel Forecast
- 2017 will mark the third consecutive year of growth in Memorial Day travel with 2.7% more travelers than last year.
- 6 million Americans (88.1% of travelers) will drive to their destinations, an increase of 2.4% over last year.
- 9 million Americans are taking to the skies this Memorial Day, increasing air travel by 5.5% over last year.
- 75 million travelers, an increase 2.9% from 2016, will look to other modes of transportation, including cruises, trains and buses.
- Drivers will pay the highest Memorial Day gas prices since 2015. Airfares, car rental rates and mid-range hotels are all trending higher than last Memorial Day.
Travelers still hitting the road despite higher gas prices While AAA expects most U.S. drivers will pay the highest Memorial Day gas prices since 2015, the vast majority of holiday travelers (88.1%) are still planning to hit the road. Automobile travel will grow by 2.4% this Memorial Day, with 34.6 million Americans planning a holiday road trip. The national average price for a gallon of gas as of Wednesday (May 17) was $2.34, 11 cents more than last year.
More Americans are planning to rent cars for their holiday road trips this year. AAA’s car rental bookings are 19% higher than last Memorial Day. According to Hertz, the busiest day for car rental pick-ups is expected to be Friday, May 26, based on last year’s data.
This article originally appeared on the Woodall’s website.
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