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Nearly 71M Travelers Expected Over Fourth of July Holiday

AAA's travel forecast calls for 60.6 million car travelers.
Angela Hanson
Fourth of July road trip

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Travelers should hit the road early during the upcoming Independence Day weekend to beat the traffic. 

According to AAA projections, 70.9 million people will travel 50 miles or more away from home during the Fourth of July weekend. This marks a 5% increase compared to last year and an 8% increase over 2019, the association reported.

[Read more: Easing Gas Prices to Drive Summer Road Trips]

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"With summer vacations in full swing and the flexibility of remote work, more Americans are taking extended trips around Independence Day," said Paula Twidale, senior vice president of AAA Travel. "We anticipate this July 4th week will be the busiest ever with an additional 5.7 million people traveling compared to 2019." 

The travel forecast includes a record 60.6 million people expected to travel by car over Independence weekend, up 2.8 million from 2023. The figure also beats the 55.3 million car travelers from 2019, according to AAA.

Gas prices should make it easier to travel by car. The national average is down from last year's $3.53 per gallon. Pump prices are expected to decrease leading up to Independence Day, then remain fairly stable until Labor Day.

Transportation data and insights provider INRIX reports that the worst times to travel by car before and on July 4 are between 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Travelers returning on Monday, July 8, should plan to avoid morning and afternoon rush hour.

"Drivers in large metro areas can expect the worst traffic delays on Wednesday, July 3, as they leave town, and Sunday, July 7, as they return," said Bob Pishue, transportation analyst at INRIX. "Road trips over the holiday week could take up to 67% longer than normal. Travelers should monitor 511 services, local news stations and traffic apps for up-to-the-minute road conditions." 

Founded in 2004, INRIX provides data and analytics into how people move by leveraging data gathered from connected devices and vehicles.

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