Going out of town this Thanksgiving? You’ll also be among the 55 million Americans who travel | Tech US News

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WASHINGTON – It’s that time of year again. Thanksgiving is here, and soon millions of Americans will be hitting the roads, taking a flight, or riding the rails to enjoy time with friends and family as 2022 slowly winds down.

And after a few years of isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic, more and more people are choosing to skip solo dinners and gather with those we love to thank.

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In fact, AAA estimates that 54.6 million people will drive 50 miles or more this Thanksgiving, up 1.5% from 2021 and up 98% from pre-pandemic volumes. Additionally, AAA says this year is expected to be the third busiest for Thanksgiving trips since the organization began tracking those numbers in 2000.

“Families and friends are looking forward to spending time together this Thanksgiving, one of the busiest days to travel in the last two decades,” said Paula Twidale, AAA’s senior vice president of Travel, in a news release. “Plan ahead and be patient, whether you’re driving or flying.”

Like last year, AAA says most travelers — nearly 49 million Americans — will drive to their destinations. But while Thanksgiving car trips have increased slowly, just 0.4% since 2021, car trips are still 2.5% below 2019 levels.

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Thanksgiving Air Travel Takes Off

Are you hoping to catch a flight to see friends and family for Thanksgiving this year? Expect full airports and full planes.

AAA says air travel is up nearly 8% from last year, with at least 4.5 million people flying to Thanksgiving destinations this year.

This is an increase of more than 330,000 travelers and almost 99% more than in 2019, before the pandemic.

“Airport parking spaces fill up quickly, so reserve a spot in advance and arrive early,” Twidale said in the news release. “Anticipate long TSA lines. If possible, avoid checking a bag so you have more flexibility if flights are delayed or need to be rescheduled.”

More Thanksgiving travelers choosing other modes of transportation this year

While most people going out of town will drive or fly, there are other modes of transportation that more Americans choose when they get away for Thanksgiving.

AAA says more than 1.4 million people will choose to travel by bus, train or even cruises, which is a 23% increase over last year and a whopping 96% over 2019 levels.

“With travel restrictions lifted and more people feeling comfortable taking public transport again, it’s no surprise that buses, trains and cruises are making a comeback in a big way,” Twidale said in the press release. “Regardless of your chosen mode of transportation, expect crowds during your trip and at your destination. If your schedule is flexible, consider off-peak travel times during the holidays.”

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