Rose White, at AAA-Nebraska, says strong economic growth that’s being fueled by robust consumer spending is driving the significant demand in seasonal travel.
“More than one-third of Americans will travel this holiday season,” White says. “The record-breaking 112.5-million travelers taking to the nation’s roads, runways and rails for the year-end holidays represents a 4.4% increase over last year and the most since AAA began tracking holiday travel in 2001.”
While gasoline has been relatively expensive throughout this year, White says a recent pump price drop combined with rising disposable income is motivating more people to take to the highways.
“Nebraska has fallen to $2.18 a gallon,” White says. “That’s down nearly 30-cents compared to what it was just a month ago.” Nationwide, gas prices are averaging $2.36, almost 20-cents a gallon higher than Nebraska.
The motor club is expecting to rescue more than 960,000 motorists from various troubles over the year-end holidays.
“Dead batteries, lockouts and flat tires will be the leading reasons why they need service,” White says. “We always recommend before you hit the roadways, take your vehicle to a trusted repair facility and have them give it a checkout before you hit the road.”
The survey finds more Americans will travel by car this holiday season than ever before. The 102.1 million people expected to pack up their cars for road trips is 4.4 percent higher than last year.
Also, the 6.7 million people who will travel by air this year is the highest level since in 15 years and is 4.2 percent more than last year. As for trains, buses and cruise ships, travel across those sectors will increase by 4 percent with a total 3.7 million passengers.