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AAA: Thanksgiving Weekend Travel Volume Highest In 12 Years

Kansas Public Radio

This week is the single busiest travel time of the year. The travel and insurance agency AAA says millions of Americans will hit the road, hop on trains or take to the skies to spend Thanksgiving with family and friends. Holiday travel is up from last year, and the highest it's been in more than a decade.

I-70 is one of the busiest highways in Kansas and Missouri and, because of the holiday, it will see a lot more traffic than usual. According to AAA, nearly 51 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more during the holiday weekend.

Despite the fact that a gallon of gas is now 40 to 50 cents higher than it was last Thanksgiving, more Americans are traveling this holiday weekend than at any other time in the past 12 years.

With so many vehicles on the road, AAA's Roadside Assistance team expects to help about 1,500 motorists--and that's just in Kansas.

The state Highway Patrol has some advice for holiday travelers: Slow down, buckle up, and watch out for deer.

Travel Forecast Facts from AAA Kansas, by the numbers:

50.9 million – Number of Americans nationwide who will journey 50 miles or more away from home this Thanksgiving, a 3.3 percent increase over last year.

1.6 million – Number of additional people nationwide taking to the roads, skies, rails and waterways compared with last year.

2005 – The last year that had a higher Thanksgiving weekend travel volume than 2017.

3.95 million – Number of travelers nationwide who will fly to their Thanksgiving destination. With a 5 percent increase over last year, air travel is the mode of travel that will see the largest growth this year.

330,000 – Number of motorists nationwide that AAA expects to rescue with roadside assistance this Thanksgiving weekend, with the primary reasons being lockouts, flat tires and battery-related issues.

1,500 – Number of motorists that AAA Kansas Roadside Assistance expects to rescue during the Thanksgiving 2017 travel weekend.

$2.39 – Average Kansas price for a gallon of gas as of Nov. 20.

$1.90 – Thanksgiving 2016 gas price in Kansas.