Thanksgiving travel slightly up this year, AAA says
November 24, 2009
WASHINGTON (AP) – The number of Americans traveling away from home for Thanksgiving will be up only slightly this year from 2008, according to a report from the AAA auto club.
The group, which surveyed 1,350 households, said there will be about 33.2 million people traveling by car this year – a 2.1 percent increase from last year.
But there will be a 6.7 percent decrease in the number of air travelers, totaling 2.3 million this year, continuing a decade-long decline of Thanksgiving air travel.
In the report released Wednesday, AAA officials said the expected increase reflects improved consumer confidence from a year ago, when Thanksgiving travel dropped 25 percent following the country’s housing and economic problems. Americans may feel more financially secure and be more willing to travel, the report says.
“The economy is still very clearly weighing heavily on the minds of Thanksgiving travelers this year, and that’s evidenced by the very small increase that we expect to see in total travel,” said Geoff Sundstrom, a spokesman for AAA’s national office in Heathrow, Fla.
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