AAA Southern New England: Thanksgiving holiday travel is projected to rise for 4th straight year

Next week, 43.6 million Americans are projected to travel 50 miles or more from home during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, an increase of 0.7 percent over the 43.3 million people who traveled last year, AAA Southern New England said.

That increase marks the fourth consecutive year of growing holiday travelers since 2008, the year the economy slumped and Thanksgiving travel fell by 25 percent.

Regionally, meanwhile, AAA projects that 13.3 percent of the New England population will travel during the Thanksgiving holiday period, which AAA defines as Wednesday through Sunday of next week.

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Nationwide, roughly 90 percent of Thanksgiving holiday travelers plan to travel by automobile, AAA Southern New England said.

For the Thanksgiving holiday, the average lowest round-trip rate by air is $188 for the top 40 US air routes, a drop of 11 percent from last year, AAA Southern New England said.

According to the survey of intended travelers, the average distance traveled by Americans during the holiday weekend is expected to be 588 miles, a decline of 16.7 percent from last year when travelers planned to log 706 miles, AAA New England said.

The Wednesday before Thanksgiving is expected to the busiest travel day, AAA New England added.