WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – There’s no place like home for the holidays is a tune some will be singing this year.
“We are happy to stay home,” says Daniel Morrissey of Springfield. He told 22News, “My wife and I, and our five children, we are having bunch of family over for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.”
But millions of others, by trains, planes, and automobiles, are traveling for the holidays.
According to Mark Schieldrop of AAA Northeast, “… 112.7 million people are expected to travel more than 50 miles from home.”
Travel experts predict more than 102 million Americans driving to their holiday destinations despite roller-coaster gas prices. And expensive air fares are not stopping an increase of air travel this holiday season with numbers up 14% as 7.2 million are expected to fly.
“We are closing in on those pre-pandemic numbers,” Schieldrop noted.
AAA says travel time will be extended this year because Christmas and New Year’s Day both fall on Sundays. And in addition to that holiday weekend, more people work hybrid schedules which makes their travel time more flexible.
Schieldrop predicts the busiest days to be, “Friday during the day and leading into the evening we are going to see some pretty good volume. Saturday is going to be a big travel day… a lot of folks travel for Christmas Eve, Wednesday, the 28th, the worst day to come home. And that’s gonna be during the rush hour period.”
And whether it’s by road or air, you can best avoid the high volumes of travelers by leaving as early as possible. Other modes of transportation rebounding this holiday season include bus, train, and cruise ship.