ORLANDO—AAA Travel expects 40.8 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more for Independence Day.
This number showcases a 0.8% decrease from the 41.1 million Americans who traveled on the holiday last year. This projected decline is attributed to a shorter holiday period, as the Fourth of July falls on a Thursday this year, shortening last year’s six-day holiday period to the standard five days.
Hotel rates for AAA Three Diamond lodgings are projected to increase by four percent from last year, with travelers spending an average $164 per night as opposed to last year’s $158. The average hotel rate for AAA Two Diamond hotels is expected to increase 2% with an average cost of $119 per night.
AAA projects that 84% of travelers, or 34.4 million, will travel by car, which is a 0.7% decrease from 34.7 million last year. Travel volume is anticipated to remain above the 13-yr. average of 38.9 million travelers. The average distance of travel is expected to decrease to 613 miles as opposed to last year’s 723 miles.
The largest share of travelers, at 32%, is expected to depart on Wednesday, July 3. This year, 46% of travelers left prior to the holiday, while 65% left early last year. Most return trips (38%) will take place on Sunday, July 7.
An increase in air travel is projected, with more than 3.07 million travelers, or 8%, will fly, as compared to last year’s 3.06 million.