AAA Travel estimates 36.1 million Americans will travel 50 or more miles from home this Memorial Day holiday weekend, a 1.5-percent increase from the 35.5 million people who traveled in 2013. More than eight in 10 of these travelers are expected to drive to their destination, according to AAA.
The organization projects that most drivers will pay lower gas prices over the holiday weekend thanks to rising supplies. The average price of a gallon of gasoline is expected to be relatively similar or even slightly less than last year’s national Memorial Day average of $3.63.
Miles driven in May 2013, which includes Memorial Day, showed an overall increase of 0.9 percent, or 2.3 billion vehicle miles, from May 2012, according to The Federal Highway Administration (FHA), a division of the U.S. Department of Transportation.
“As we enter into the summer travel season with warmer temperatures and tulips in bloom, thoughts of historic cold are still fresh in the minds of Americans in many parts of the country,” says Marshall Doney, AAA chief operating officer. “The winter blues appear to have given Americans the travel bug and a case of cruise cabin fever as travel for the holiday is expected to hit a new post-recession high.”
“As the economy continues to improve at a slow and easy pace consumer spending, disposable income, consumer confidence and the employment outlook are trending up, which is welcomed news for the travel industry.”