Thanksgiving could bring the busiest air travel weekend in 18 years

By Hannah Erin Lang

Greater than 55 million People plan to hit the street for the vacation, as a authorities shutdown threatens to complicate their plans.

Staying house for Turkey Day? That could be one thing to be grateful for this 12 months.

About 55.4 million People are planning to journey through the Thanksgiving vacation, in line with AAA’s vacation journey forecast — the third-busiest Thanksgiving for the reason that group began accumulating the information in 2000.

“For a lot of People, Thanksgiving and journey go hand in hand, and this vacation, we anticipate extra folks on the roads, skies, and seas,” Paula Twidale, senior vice chairman of AAA Journey, stated in a press release, including that the forecast displays robust demand for journey seen all through 2023.

These crowds of vacationers are additionally going through the potential for some problems if Congress cannot avoid a Nov. 18 federal authorities shutdown, simply in time for the vacation weekend.

If lawmakers cannot agree on a plan to maintain the federal government open, the shutdown will take impact Saturday. That will pressure federal workers akin to air site visitors controllers or Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) workers to work with out pay throughout one of many 12 months’s busiest journey durations.

The whole variety of vacationers this 12 months aren’t anticipated to achieve the best pre-pandemic ranges. Practically 56 million People. hit the street for Thanksgiving in 2019.

But it surely’s up barely from final 12 months, with 2.3% extra People planning to journey between Wednesday, Nov. 22 and Sunday, Nov. 26.

Most vacationers are anticipated to drive to their vacation spot, with 49.1 million planning to journey by automotive through the vacation weekend, the forecast stated. Drivers ought to anticipate to hit essentially the most site visitors on Wednesday, Nov. 22 between 2 and 6 p.m..

About 4.7 million persons are planning to fly throughout Thanksgiving week, the forecast confirmed. That will make it the busiest Thanksgiving for air journey in 18 years.

Shoppers have been giving combined indicators on how a lot they’re prepared to spend on meals, presents and journey this vacation season. Based on an earlier Bankrate survey, greater than three-quarters of People had been planning to change their vacation journey plans to chop again on prices, by staying house or swapping flights for street journeys.

-Hannah Erin Lang

This content material was created by MarketWatch, which is operated by Dow Jones & Co. MarketWatch is printed independently from Dow Jones Newswires and The Wall Road Journal.


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11-14-23 1117ET

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