Memorial Day Weekend Travel To Be At Near-Record Levels

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High gas prices are not anticipated to stop Americans from traveling this Memorial Day weekend.

AAA expects more than 41.5 million Americans to travel this Memorial Day weekend, which marks the start of the warm weather vacation season.

More than 36.6 million motorist will hit the roads and highways, 3.1 million will take to the air, and 1.8 million will take trains, buses, and cruise ships, according to estimates from AAA.

The near-record amount of holiday weekend travelers mark a nearly 5 percent jump from last year. The last time so many people traveled over Memorial Day was more than a dozen years ago.

“The highest gas prices since 2014 won’t keep travelers home this Memorial Day weekend,” said Bill Sutherland, senior vice president of AAA Travel and Publishing. “A strong economy and growing consumer confidence are giving Americans all the motivation they need to kick off what we expect to be a busy summer travel season with a Memorial Day getaway.”

Pennsylvania Turnpike officials said they have suspended all maintenance and construction work as of 3 p.m. Friday in an effort to keep travelers moving.

More than 2.3 million vehicles are expected to take the Pennsylvania Turnpike over the holiday weekend. The highest volume is expected Friday.

According to statistics from, the highest gas price in Newtown on Thursday was $3.29 a gallon with the lowest coming in at $2.98 a gallon. The statewide gas price average is $3.11 with the New Jersey average comes in at $3.01.

Pennsylvania State Police troopers will also be out on highways and keeping an eye out for aggressive, distracted and impaired drivers, Lt. David Devitt said.

AAA also expects to help more than 340,000 motorists who will run into car trouble this weekend.

“Before you head out on your road trip, plan accordingly and be aware that extra cars mean more traffic and perhaps more accidents. Put your phone down. Slow down. Pay careful attention and take regular breaks,” Pennsylvania Turnpike CEO Mark Compton said.

About the author

Tom Sofield

Tom Sofield

Tom Sofield has covered news in Bucks County for five years for both newspaper and online publications. In 2012, Tom was honored at the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association Foundation's Keystone Press Awards for his coverage of President Obama's visit to Falls Township in 2011. When he's not covering news in the area, Tom enjoys checking out the newest restaurants and bars, exploring forgotten places of industry in the area, going to local parks and spending time with his friends and family. If there's one thing you should know about Tom, he is a local news junkie through and through. Email: Phone: 215-431-1001