AAA: More travelers mean heavy traffic Memorial Day weekend
More people will be hitting the road this Memorial Day weekend, according to AAA’s holiday outlook released Wednesday.
An estimated 43 million Americans - nearly 4 percent more than last year’s holiday - are expected to travel 50 miles or more Memorial Day weekend, according to the National AAA annual Memorial Day Travel Forecast.
And, 88 percent of those people will be traveling by motor vehicle. That’s 3.5 percent more than last Memorial Day.
Major Connecticut roads like I-95, I-91, I-84 and the Merritt and Wilbur Cross parkways are expected to jammed with traffic.
The worst time to travel in the New York and Connecticut area will be between 5 and 7 p.m. Thursday, May 23 and Friday, May 24. INRIX, a global transportation analytics company, said travel delay times could double because of combination of holiday travelers and people heading home after work.
“Look for busy roads, rails and runways this holiday,” Fran Mayko, AAA Northeast spokeswoman said in a release. “And even though the national gas average is on par with last year’s gas prices, the majority of travelers will drive to their destination.”
Although gas prices have increased more than 30 cents in the last two months, Wednesday’s national average is on par with prices this time last year.
The national average for a gallon of self-serve regular is $2.86, three cents higher than this time last year. In Connecticut, the average price of $2.99 has been flirting around the $3 for last week. Wednesday’s price is actually seven cents lower than this time last year.
“Memorial Day is truly a family drive vacation,” says Mayko, “because for most families, it’s the least expensive method, the most flexible option, and the most fun way to travel.”
AAA says a strong economy, growing consumer confidence, and solid job and income growth are stimulating Memorial Day travel this year.