VIDEO: AAA Predicts Record-Breaking 44.2 Million Americans Will Travel For 4th of July Holiday

By  //  June 26, 2017

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2.3 Million Floridians expected to travel

ABOVE VIDEO: AAA says a record-breaking 44.2 million Americans will travel. That number includes more than two million Floridians.

BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – AAA forecasts more Americans will travel this Independence Day than ever before.

A record-breaking 44.2 million Americans (2.3 million Floridians) will take to the nation’s roads, skies, rails and waterways; an increase of 1.3 million Americans (103,000 Floridians) from last year’s holiday.

“This Independence Day will be historic,” said Vicky Evans, Assistant Vice President, Travel Sales Development, AAA – The Auto Club Group.

“Traveler numbers are up and prices are down, adding to what has already been a bustling summer travel season.”

Most-Traveled Summer Holiday

The Independence Day holiday travel period is defined as Friday, June 30 to Tuesday, July 4.

Independence Day is usually the most-traveled of the “Big 3” summer holidays.

While Memorial and Labor Day holidays often attract a similar number of total travelers, Independence Day commonly attracts 12-13 percent more.

“More people travel for Independence Day, because it falls in the middle of summer when school is out,” Evans said.

“Families can easily plan extended vacations for this holiday without worrying about school calendars.”

The vast majority of travelers—37.5 million Americans—will drive to their Independence Day destinations, an increase of 2.9 percent over last year.

By the Numbers: Independence Day Travel Forecast

  • 44.2 million Americans are expected to travel → 2.9 percent more than last year
  • 2.3 million Floridians are expected to travel → 4.8percent more than last year
  • 37.5 million Americans will drive → 2.9 percent more than last year
  • 2 million Floridians will drive → 5 percent more than last year
  • 3.4 million Americans will fly → 4.6 percent more than last year
  • 168,556 Floridians will fly → 5.1 percent more than last year
  • 3.3 million Americans will take other modes of transportation → 1.4  percent more than last year
  • 125,305 Floridians will take other modes of transportation → 1.4 percent more than last year

Prices are on par or lower than last year

  • Gas prices could hit 13-year lows for the holiday
  • Airfares will average $186 → 10 percent less than last year
  • Daily car rental rates will average $65 → 14 percent less than last year
  • Hotel prices will average $185 → the same as last year

On Independence Day 2016, gas prices averaged $2.272 nationwide and $2.231 in Florida

Holiday Gas Prices Could Hit 13-Year Lows

Gas prices remain slightly below year-ago levels, which is another factor driving the increase in travelers this Independence Day.

On Wednesday, June 21, 2017, the national average price for a gallon of gas was $2.28; the Florida average was $2.25.

Check today’s gas price averages here.

On Independence Day 2016, gas prices averaged $2.272 nationwide and $2.231 in Florida – the lowest prices for the holiday since 2005. Should average prices dip below $2.226 (US) and $2.233 (FL), they would be the lowest for the holiday since 2004.

“Florida motorists are finding the lowest gas prices of the year, as oil prices plunge in response to high production and supply,” said Mark Jenkins, spokesman, AAA – The Auto Club Group.

“Last year, the state average declined 6 cents from June 22 to July 4. During that time, oil prices drifted from $49 to $47 a barrel. In the past four weeks, crude prices have collapsed, dropping more than $7 per barrel.” 

More People Will Drive, Fly and Use Other Modes of Travel

The vast majority of travelers—37.5 million Americans—will drive to their Independence Day destinations, an increase of 2.9 percent over last year. Air travel is expected to increase 4.6 percent over last year, with 3.4 million Americans taking to the skies this Independence Day. Travel by other modes of transportation, including cruises, trains and buses, will increase 1.4 percent, to 3.3 million travelers.

Airfares and Car Rental Rates Swing Lower this Independence Day

Travelers can expect lower prices for airfares, car rentals and hotels this Independence Day weekend.

According to AAA’s Leisure Travel Index, average airfares for the top 40 domestic flight routes will be 10 percent lower this year, with an average round trip ticket landing at $186.

Daily car rental rates will average $65, which is 14 percent less than last Independence Day. Hotel costs are the same as last year, with the average AAA Three Diamond Rated hotel costing $185 per night.

AAA recommends motorists take their vehicle to a trusted repair facility to perform any needed maintenance before heading out/

AAA to Rescue More Than 338,000 Motorists this Independence Day

AAA expects to rescue more than 338,000 motorists this Independence Day weekend, with the primary reasons being lockouts, flat tires and battery-related issues.

AAA recommends motorists take their vehicle to a trusted repair facility to perform any needed maintenance before heading out.

Oil changes, fluid level checks, battery tests and tire inspections go a long way toward reducing the chances of a breakdown. AAA members get a free 24-point inspection at approved auto repair facilities (learn more).

Orlando Remains Top Destination for Summer Travel

With new attractions debuting at popular theme parks, Orlando claims the number one spot on the list of most-visited locales for 2017 summer travel based on AAA’s summer travel bookings:

  1. Orlando, Florida
  2. Vancouver, Canada
  3. Cancun, Mexico
  4. Seattle, Washington
  5. Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
  6. Honolulu, Hawaii
  7. Anaheim, California
  8. Anchorage, Alaska
  9. Las Vegas, Nevada
  10. Montego Bay, Jamaica

To help travelers plan their trips to a top 10 destination, AAA’s team of anonymous hotel and restaurant inspectors recently selected a few of their favorite places to stay and dine..

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AAA to Reimburse Members up to $1,500 for Emergency Expenses

  • AAA provides a benefit called “Car Travel Interruption Protection” for all of its members.
  • Under this benefit, AAA reimburses covered emergency expenses for members who are traveling by car – at least 100 miles away from home – and have a breakdown, accident, or if their vehicle is stolen while en route.
  • Reimbursable expenses are covered up to $600 for Classic members, $1,000 for Plus members, and $1,500 for Premier members.
  • Covered expenses include: meals and lodging, car rental, and transportation home or to their destination within 72 hours.
  • AAA members can find complete information in their membership booklet and use this form to make a claim.

Travelers can use the free app to map a route, find lowest gas prices, access exclusive member discounts, make travel arrangements, request AAA roadside assistance, find AAA Approved Auto Repair facilities and review nearly 59,000 AAA Approved and Diamond Rated hotels and restaurants.

AAA offers the following tools to assist travelers

  • AAA mobile app – Travelers can use the free app to map a route, find lowest gas prices, access exclusive member discounts, make travel arrangements, request AAA roadside assistance, find AAA Approved Auto Repair facilities and review nearly 59,000 AAA Approved and Diamond Rated hotels and restaurants.
  • GasPrices.AAA.com – Find average national, state and local gas prices; research top gas price trends, and use the “Gas Cost Calculator” to determine how much you can expect to spend on gasoline during your next road trip.
  • AAA.com/AutoRepair – Find a AAA approved Auto Repair Facility. Each facility undergoes a comprehensive investigation and meets stringent quality standards. AAA members receive special discounts and benefits when visiting these locations.
  • AAA.com/Travel – Book a hotel, flight, rental car, or cruise. Find travel ideas, hot cruise and land deals, review top destinations, purchase discounted attraction tickets, and find TripTik, tour books and Maps.
  • AAA.com/TravelerReviews – View ratings and see what other travelers said about cruises and tour vacations they booked through AAA.
  • AAA.com/Diamonds – Search over 59,000 AAA Approved and Diamond Rated hotels and restaurants. AAA is the only rating system that uses full-time, professionally trained evaluators to inspect each property on an annual basis. Every AAA Approved establishment offers the assurance of acceptable cleanliness, comfort and hospitality, and ratings of One to Five Diamonds help travelers find the right match for amenities and services.

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