SYRACUSE, NY (WRVO) – Expect busy roads and long lines at airports this Memorial Day weekend. AAA Director of Public Relations Elizabeth Carey said 39 million people are expected to travel 50 miles or more from home.
“There’s this pent up demand for travel,” said Carey. “People will use any excuse out there to take a bigger vacation.”
However, as travel bounces back to almost pre-pandemic numbers, drivers are facing record breaking gas prices.
AAA Communications Specialist Valeria Puma said usually prices go down after the holiday weekend, but this year, there is a lot of uncertainty.
“Prices typically increase as Memorial Day weekend approaches and refineries are switching over to summer blend fuel,” said Puma. “But this year, volatile crude oil prices and geopolitical tensions are driving up prices dramatically.”
Puma recommends mapping routes ahead of time, checking tire pressure, and removing bulky items from your car to save on gas.
Air travelers are also facing challenges this spring between flight delays, cancellations, and staffing issues.
AAA Senior Travel Sales Advisor Kevin Bloom said plan early and consider taking one of the first flights of the day during peak travel times.
If you’re leaving early in the day, that’s going to be one of the most crowded times and busiest times at the airport, but at the same point, it also gives them more opportunity to try to help you through the rest of the day if there’s any opportunity to do so,” said Bloom.
Alternate forms of travel are also seeing a boost this year, with the number of travelers on busses, trains, and cruises expected to increase 200% from last year’s numbers.
AAA said busy travel is expected to continue throughout the summer, so if you haven’t made your plans, yet, do it as soon as possible.