DALLAS — The Thanksgiving travel rush was back on this year, setting aside inflation concerns to reunite with loved ones and enjoy some normalcy after two holiday seasons marked by COVID-19 restrictions.
The busiest travel days during Thanksgiving week are usually Tuesday, Wednesday and the Sunday after the holiday.
AAA predicts that 54.6 million people will travel at least 50 miles from home in the U.S. this week, a 1.5% bump over Thanksgiving last year and only 2% less than in 2019. The auto club and insurance seller says nearly 49 million of those will travel by car, and 4.5 million will fly between Wednesday and Sunday.
People getting behind the wheel don’t seem fazed by higher gasoline than last year or the widespread concern about inflation and the economy. That is already leading to predictions of strong travel over Christmas and New Year’s.
“This pent-up demand for travel is still a real thing. It doesn’t feel like it’s going away,” says Tom Hall, a vice president and longtime writer for Lonely Planet, the publisher of travel guides. “That’s keeping planes full, that’s keeping prices high.”
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