AAA predicts more air and automobile travelers this holiday season than last year. About 3.2 million more Americans will take a trip farther than fifty miles from December 23 to January 3.
AAA Regional Communications Director Bevi Powell says that may be due to travelers’ increased optimism about their financial situations.
Powell says despite gas prices being up about 50 cents from last year’s levels, more people are driving.
“This is the time last year that we saw our record lows. We were up around four dollars in the middle of summer in 2008, and those gas prices plummeted very quickly, and we hit prices that were lower than we had seen in years. So fifty cents higher this year, but still more palatable than $4-per-gallon prices,” says Powell.
She says almost 3% more people will fly this season, which is good news for an airline industry that has been hit hard by economic recession.