Record-Breaking Number of Road Trips Projected For Memorial Day Weekend

Memorial Day weekend is anticipated to witness a significant increase in travelers compared to last year, according to a forecast by AAA. Approximately 44 million travelers are expected to travel from May 23 to May 27, which represents a million more travelers than in 2019. This figure, however, is still below the all-time record set in 2005.

Travel by car is expected to surge, with 38.4 million people planning to travel by road, marking the highest number since AAA began tracking in 2000. This increase is due to factors such as distance, time, availability, and cost. However, traffic congestion should be considered while planning road trips, as some routes may take nearly 90% longer than usual, especially routes like Gainesville to Tampa, Los Angeles to Bakersfield, and Galveston to Houston.

Gas prices for this year are expected to be similar to those of last year, and AAA does not foresee this as a deterrent for travelers. Additionally, despite broader inflation concerns, AAA does not anticipate travelers being deterred from their trips.

In terms of air travel, AAA expects 3.51 million travelers to fly, representing a 9% increase from 2019. Despite the increase, flight prices are expected to be similar to those in 2023. Other modes of transportation, such as buses, trains, and cruises, could see a 5.6% increase from last year. Cruise ports for Alaska itineraries are among the popular destinations this year.

Popular travel destinations include theme park and entertainment venues like Orlando and Las Vegas, as well as sun-and-fun destinations in Florida. Urban hubs like New York, Denver, and Boston are also traveler favorites. Internationally, cities like London, Paris, Dublin, and Athens remain popular.

Looking beyond Memorial Day weekend, Asia, particularly Japan, is expected to make a comeback this year as travelers feel more comfortable venturing further out to destinations that took longer to recover from the pandemic.

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