More than 38 million Americans are expected to travel over the Memorial Day weekend, the second-highest for Memorial Day weekend, according to AAA. There were 44 million Memorial Day travelers in 2005. The Memorial Day holiday travel period is defined as Thursday, May 26, to Monday, May 30.
Compared to last year, that is approximately 700,000 more holiday travelers. Perhaps not coincidentally, gas prices are at their lowest in more than a decade. In fact, gas prices are the lowest since 2005, the only year with more holiday travelers.
According to AAA, motorists in the U.S. have saved more than $15 billion on gas since the beginning of the year when compared to the previous year in the same time frame. Unemployment has also been declining while personal income has been increasing, factors that may contribute to more travel.
Nearly 90 percent of those traveling will be driving to their destinations. Despite long waits making headlines, air travel is expected to increase by 1.6 percent to 2.6 million travelers, nearly 7 percent of all travelers this year. The remaining travelers will be using various modes of travel, including cruises, train and buses.
As of press time, AAA’s daily fuel gauge report reveals that regular unleaded gasoline is 42.5 cents lower than it was last year. Diesel is 58.3 cents lower than this time last year. A survey conducted by AAA shows that 55 percent of Americans are more likely to take a road trip because of lower fuel prices.
So where is everyone going? AAA’s top Memorial Day weekend destinations are:
- Myrtle Beach
- Washington, D.C.
- New York
- San Francisco
- Los Angeles
- South Padre Island
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