Record traffic jams and crowded airports: how to travel on Thanksgiving
Planning a trip on Thanksgiving or the day before? You are far from alone in this.
The American Automobile Association is forecasting record traffic congestion and airport congestion this year. A total of 55,3 million travelers are expected to travel from Wednesday, November 27 to Sunday, December 1 - by car, plane, train, bus and cruise ship. USA Today... Compared to last year, this is 1,6 million more people - the second highest in 19 years of measurements.
Avoid mid wednesday
The worst time to hit the road is Wednesday, according to global transportation analyst firm INRIX. If you are planning a trip in the late afternoon or early evening (17:00 pm to 19:30 pm) in Atlanta, Los Angeles, New York, Boston, or Houston, it can take 3,5 times longer than usual.
Traffic jams start early in San Francisco (14: 00-16: 00) and Washington (15: 00-17: 00) - in these cities, trips will last about 3 times longer than usual.
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“With a record number of travelers and an ever-growing number of people in the country's major metropolitan areas, drivers must prepare for severe delays,” said Trevor Reed, transportation analyst at INRIX. "Although travel times during peak hours on Wednesday will be nationwide, travelers should expect much more congestion than usual during the week."
It will be crowded in the sky too
There will also be traffic jams: INRIX estimates that 4,45 million Americans will go on Thanksgiving, which is 4,6% more than last year.
According to Airlines for America, a US airline trading organization, the busiest day at the airport will be Sunday after Thanksgiving (December 1): 3,1 million passengers are expected to fly out on that day.
Monday before Thanksgiving (November 25) will be the easiest day to travel compared to subsequent holidays.
For those who cannot leave earlier and are afraid of traffic jams on Tuesday or Wednesday, there is always Thanksgiving directly. Roads are less busy and you will find the cheapest plane tickets for this week.
So if you need to drive just a couple of hours or your destination is near the airport, it will be easier to travel on Turkey Day itself.
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Most popular destinations
Thanksgiving weekend is often a time for so-called "winter birds" - travelers who move from the northeastern United States in warm weather to Florida, home to four cities included in the list of best bookings for the weekend. Orlando, Florida, and Anaheim, California tops the top 10 (many are likely to fly to Disney parks). New York, Las Vegas and Phoenix are also on this list.
For travelers who prefer to abandon Thanksgiving dinner for a long weekend on the beach, the best international destinations are offered: Nassau, Bahamas; Cancun, Mexico; Punta Cana, Dominican Republic; Montego Bay, Jamaica.
Only one place with cold weather entered the international list: Munich, Germany, where the famous Christmas market is located.
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