AAA: Highest Thanksgiving Travel for 2017 season

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"Thanksgiving kicks off the start of a busy holiday season, and more thankful Americans will travel to spend time with friends and family this year", said Judy Ocasio, Vice President of Travel and Branch Ops for AAA Tidewater Virginia.

If you're traveling to your Thanksgiving dinner, you could see a lot more people on the road than a year ago.

Air travel is expected to grow by 5 percent to 3.95 million trips, buoyed by the cheapest tickets since 2013, AAA said. Prices were at $2.56 a gallon on Wednesday, about 10 percent above past year, AAA said.

California gas prices have skyrocketed in the last two weeks to their highest levels in more than two years and are likely to remain above $3.20 on average in most areas throughout the holiday weekend. The price of gas statewide is up from the $2.19 a gallon recorded a year ago.

"AAA expects drivers will pay the highest Thanksgiving gas prices in three years, thanks to strong demand and higher oil prices", said Mark Jenkins, AAA spokesman in Tampa.

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Travel will not only be up here in Wisconsin, but across the country as well.

In the Mountain region (Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, and Wyoming), travel volume is expected to top 3.7 million during this period, experts said.

"Although it will be more expensive to drive to Grandma's house compared to recent years, the current price at the pump is not high enough to deter Floridians from taking a trip". Already long travel times could quadruple, according to AAA.

AAA and INRIX, a global transportation analytics company, predict travel times in the most congested cities in the USA during the holiday week could be as much as three times longer than the optimal trip.

And vehicle rentals are averaging $70 per day, 34 percent above a year ago and the highest rate for a Thanksgiving weekend since 2013. Nationally, 89 percent of travelers - 45.5 million - will go by auto, which is 3.2 percent higher than past year. Travel by other modes of transportation will increase about 1.2 percent this Thanksgiving in the Great Lake State, with over 45,000 travelers choosing cruises, trains and buses as their mode of travel.

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