Posted: Jun 20, 2013 7:41 PM by MTN News
Hitting the roads for the Independence Day holiday this year?
You might notice there's fewer cars on the road. But you'd have to look very closely.
AAA forecasts 40.8 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more from home for the Independence Day holiday this year. While this does represent a slight decrease from the 41.1 million who traveled last year, 2013's numbers are still indicative of a recovering, albeit slowly, economy.
"Last year the Fourth of July fell on a Wednesday, so we saw travelers wanting to take advantage of the longer holiday period," says AAA spokeswoman Kaelyn Kelly. "This year the holiday falls on a Thursday, which explains part of the decline. At the same time, Independence Day is typically the busiest holiday of the summer travel season with six million more Americans traveling than Memorial Day just two months ago."
The holiday travel forecast for our region predicts a 0.5 percent decline in travel this Independence Day holiday versus 2012.
Gas prices are unlikely to be a major factor in travel decisions this holiday. The current national average price for a gallon of regular gas is $3.60, 11 cents higher than last year. Despite the increase compared to last year, prices remain below their highs of earlier this year.