Slight dip expected in number of Thanksgiving travelers - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Slight dip expected in number of Thanksgiving travelers

Posted: Updated:
(Source: AAA) (Source: AAA)

(RNN) - Despite gas prices at their lowest point in several years, travel during the Thanksgiving holiday is expected to decline.

The forecast that AAA released projects 43.3 million Americans will make a trip at least 50 miles from home between Wednesday, Nov. 27 and Sunday, Dec. 1. That is a decline of 1.5 percent from last year when 44 million people took trips for Thanksgiving.

Gas prices per gallon is less than $3 in most states, the lowest Thanksgiving rate since 2010. But AAA reported the rate of travelers who drive to their destinations is expected to take a decline of 1.6 percent.

Air travel may take an even steeper decline - 3.7 percent - although, those who do fly are expected to take slightly longer trips.

"While the economy continues to improve, the sluggish pace of the recovery is creating uncertainty in the minds of some consumers," AAA Chief Operating Officer Marshall L. Doney said in a prepared release.

Good news for people planning time away from home is that Thanksgiving is the least expensive holiday of the year in regards to travel, according to Doney.

The average person had nearly $500 in travel-related expenses for last year's Thanksgiving, but that number may drop to an average of $465. By comparison, people spent $659 on Memorial Day, $749 on Independence Day and $804 on Labor Day.

Some people will try practical ways to take the stress out of the day.

According to a survey by travel site TripAdvisor, 42 percent of people will stay either in a hotel or rental property instead of with family. More than half with use a mobile device to assist with making holiday travel arrangements.

About 16 percent of those surveyed also said they would eat at a restaurant on Thanksgiving, mainly to avoid cooking.

Copyright 2013 Raycom News Network. All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow