As the US slowly transitions towards opening the economy, more than 37 million people are expected to travel during Memorial Day weekend. That’s the number of people who are traveling 50 miles or more from their home. And compared to last year’s number, that’s a 60% jump according to the AAA Memorial Day travel forecast.
37 million Americans are expected to travel by air and roads despite gas prices ramping up to levels not seen in the last 7 years. The average national price of gas nears $3. But still, 9 out of 10 travelers are going to travel by car this Memorial Day. That’s equivalent to around 34 million, which is a 52% jump from 2020’s number. However, despite the jump, it is still 9% lower compared to 2019’s figures.
AAA travel senior vice president Paula Twidale thinks that the rebound reflects pent-up travel demand and vaccination rates.
She said that “As more people get the COVID19 vaccine and consumer confidence grows, Americans are demonstrating a strong desire to travel this Memorial Day”. She then added that “This pent-up demand will result in significant increase in Memorial Day travel, which is a strong indicator for summer, though we must all remember to continue taking important safety precautions”.
Favorite Destinations This Memorial Day
Las Vegas and Orlando are among the top destinations this Memorial Day weekend. As for fly-to destinations, Honolulu and Anchorage are other top destinations for this year. An estimated 2.5 million Americans are traveling by air. That is around 6 times more than last year’s numbers.
Variants Can Ruin Summer Travel
Twidale cautioned that variants can potentially affect travel recovery. Though domestic travel is picking up, the US is still cautious to resume international travel. The US announced 80% of the world’s countries in its Do Not Travel list. Plus, the US even wants US citizens and permanent residents from India to come back to the US due to the latest COVID19 surge.
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