1.4M Thanksgiving travelers expected to fill Virginia highways

AAA: More than 1.6 million Michiganders will celebrate Thanksgiving with holiday getaway

AAA Idaho projects 265,000 Idahoans will travel fifty miles or more from home this holiday season, with 236,000 opting to travel by automobile.

In fact, some 45.5 million road-trippers will set off to grandma's house and other destinations during the Thanksgiving holiday, up from previous year and the highest volume seen nationwide since 2005.

And vehicle rentals are averaging $70 per day, 34 percent above previous year and the highest rate for a Thanksgiving weekend since 2013.

Roughly 50.9 million Americans will journey 50 miles or more away from home November 22-26, a 3.3 percent increase over previous year and the most since 2005, Heathrow, Florida-based AAA said in a report released on Thursday.

AAA and INRIX, a global transportation analytics company, predict travel times in the most congested cities in the US during the holiday week could be as much as three times longer than the optimal trip. "Oil prices reached 2-year highs last week, causing the sudden jump at the pump".

Gas prices jumped more than 10 percent after hurricanes Harvey and Irma, peaking on September 8 at an average of $2.67 a gallon.

Image courtesy of AAA
Image courtesy of AAA

The Thanksgiving holiday travel period is defined as Wednesday, Nov. 22 to Sunday, Nov. 26, according to AAA.

The AAA poll says a strong economy and high consumer confidence are contributing to the desire to travel, or at least provide the finances. That marks a 3.4 percent increase from previous year, which AAA calls a good indicator of a strong economy and high consumer confidence.

Idaho's current average price for regular gasoline is $2.65. At $157, on average, that is a 23 percent fare drop year-over-year. Travel by trains and other modes (including buses and cruises) is expected to increase 1.1 percent to 1.48 million travelers.

Airports will see the largest bump in travelers, with 3.95 million expected to take to the skies.

Fueling up: Drivers will pay the highest Thanksgiving gas prices since 2014.

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