More Americans than ever recorded by AAA are making plans to honor the red, white and blue with an Independence Day getaway this year. An estimated 48.9 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more for the holiday weekend; 2.6 million of those will be Floridians.
• AAA forecasts the highest travel volume on record - dating back to 2000.
• The five-day holiday period runs from Wednesday, July 3 to Sunday, July 7.
• Auto travel will reach record levels after increasing for the sixth consecutive year. Nearly 85 percent of travelers will drive.
• Air travel will reach record highs after rising a third consecutive year. Eight percent of travelers will fly.
• Gas prices will be cheaper than last Independence Day.
• Orlando tops the list of Independence Day travel destinations, booked with AAA.
• The busiest airport location in America to rent a car will be at the Orlando International Airport. The busiest day will be Wednesday.
Florida travel figures
• Total Travelers – 2.6 million Floridians; 123,093 (5 percent) more than
• Auto Travelers – 2.3 million Floridians; 111,856 (5.2 percent) more than
• Air Travelers – 196,589 Floridians; 10,470 (5.6 percent) more than last year.
• Other Travelers – 137,027 Floridians; 767 (0.6 percent) more than last year.
National travel figures
• Total Travelers – 48.9 million Americans; 1.9 million (4.1 percent) more than last year
• Auto Travelers – 41.4 million Americans; 1.7 million (4.3 percent) more than last year
• Air Travelers – 4 million Americans; 199,000 (5.3 percent) more than
• Other Travelers – 3.5 million Americans; 19,000 (0.6 percent) more than last year.
In addition to lower gas prices than last summer, broader economic fundamentals remain strong. Low unemployment, robust consumer spending, and rising disposable incomes are all encouraging more consumers to spend their hard-earned money on travel this summer.
“This Independence Day will be a big boom for the travel industry, as a record number of Americans prepare to travel for the holiday,” said Mark Jenkins, spokesman for AAA – The Auto Club Group.
For the 41.4 million Americans traveling by automobile this Independence Day, INRIX - in collaboration with AAA - predicts drivers will experience the greatest amount of congestion on Wednesday, July 3, as commuters mix with holiday travelers.
“Travel times will nominally increase throughout the week, but Wednesday afternoon will certainly be the worst time to be on the road,” Jenkins said. Pump prices are significantly lower than earlier this year. The state average was nearly $2.80 in April and $2.60 on Memorial Day.
“Low gas prices are added motivation for Floridians to travel for Independence Day,” Jenkins said. “Unfortunately, pump prices could rise 10 cents or more before the holiday, due to a recent spike in the price of crude. Even if that happens, holiday travelers should find prices that are well below what they paid at the pump last year.”