Thanksgiving travel could be busier than ever before, AAA says

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Thanksgiving travel could set a record this year.           

AAA says it could be one of the busiest Thanksgiving travel weeks in two decades. FOX13 has been on the interstate and in the airport.      

With school out next week, it’s already getting busy out there with a lot of people getting an early jump on it.

”I am going to cook dressing and sweet potatoes and probably some green beans and some pies and some cakes once I get there; traditional thanksgiving dinner. That’s it,” Patricia Arnold of Memphis said.

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Arnold was sitting in the airport making up her list of what to cook for Thanksgiving. She’s one of an estimated 54 million Americans traveling this week. She’s heading to Las Vegas to visit her nephew.      

National stats show, while travel is up, those hosting Thanksgiving meals are at a four-year low; only 26 percent.      

Arnold says she wouldn’t miss it, even if it means cooking for family in Vegas.

”We gotta go to the grocery store once we get out there. My nephew lives there and he is single and we are just going to celebrate with him because he is always coming to Memphis,” Arnold said.

If you fly pack your patience. Air travel is up 8.5 percent over last year, according to AAA. But, most travelers will drive this Thanksgiving holiday.      

AAA predicts 49 million Americans will hit the road. Corrie Young is heading to see family in the Missouri Bootheel.      

She said it’s already busy out there on the road.

”I think travel is a little scarier, honestly. You have to be a little more on your toes because it’s more dangerous driving,” Young said. 

Gas is 29 cents higher nationally than it was this time last year, but that’s clearly not stopping many from hitting the road.      

Kyle Cheever of Chicago was pulling through North Mississippi on the way to see his grandmother in southeast Mississippi.

”Driving has been good. Not a whole lot of traffic. It’s been pretty good,” Cheever said.      

Want to avoid the worst traffic? AAA suggests avoiding driving between 11 a.m. and 8 p.m. on Wednesday and 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day.      

The auto club said those will be peak hours on the road.