Crowded highways expected for Thanksgiving

@CNNMoney November 17, 2011: 10:07 AM ET
The highways will be crowded this Thanksgiving weekend, according to AAA, which projected a rise in travel.

The highways will be crowded this Thanksgiving weekend, according to AAA, which projected a rise in travel.

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- More Americans are hitting the road this Thanksgiving holiday, despite higher gas prices, according to the motorist group AAA.

The American Automobile Association projects 42.5 million Americans will travel at least 50 miles during the Thanksgiving weekend, an increase of 4% from the 40.9 million people who traveled last year.

But gas prices are also up, making the drive more expensive this year. The nationwide average price of unleaded gasoline was $3.39 per gallon on Thursday, compared with an average of $2.88 a year ago.

The high cost of gas might be why travel was flat for Memorial Day and actually decreased, compared to last year, during Independence Day and Labor Day. But the Americans who have been staying home to save money are shrugging off their financial concerns for Turkey Day, according to AAA.

"Driving AAA's projected increase in the number of Thanksgiving travelers is pent-up demand from Americans who may have foregone holiday travel the last three years," said Bill Sutherland, vice president of AAA Travel Services, in a prepared statement.

Donate to the Salvation Army with your iPhone

"As consumers weigh the fear of economic uncertainty and the desire to create lasting family memories this holiday, more Americans are expected to choose family and friends over frugality.

Driving will be the dominant mode of transportation during Thanksgiving, while forecasts for air travel are mixed. AAA is expecting air travel to increase by nearly 2%, but the Air Transport Association of America is projecting a 2% decrease.

AAA defines the Thanksgiving weekend as the period from Wednesday, Nov. 23, to Sunday, Nov. 27. To top of page

Overnight Avg Rate Latest Change Last Week
30 yr fixed4.12%4.00%
15 yr fixed3.14%3.00%
5/1 ARM3.25%3.01%
30 yr refi4.17%4.06%
15 yr refi3.21%3.09%
Rate data provided
by Bankrate.com
View rates in your area
 
Find personalized rates:
Economic Calendar
Latest ReportNext Update
Home pricesAug 28
Consumer confidenceAug 28
GDPAug 29
Manufacturing (ISM)Sept 4
JobsSept 7
Inflation (CPI)Sept 14
Retail sales Sept 14
CNNMoney Sponsors

Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer.

Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved.

Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved.

Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2014 and/or its affiliates.