Record amount of people expected to travel this Memorial Day weekend, AAA Texas says

Leave early in the morning or later in the evening to avoid traffic congestion

SAN ANTONIOAAA Texas says travel this upcoming Memorial Day Weekend is expected to break records.

Texas is expected to have 3.6 million travelers over the Memorial Day holiday, a 4.2% increase over last year, according to AAA.

Some of the top destinations in our state include cities along the Gulf Coast, such as Port Aransas, Galveston, and Corpus Christi. Other popular travel spots include major cities like Dallas, Houston, Austin and even San Antonio.

“The River Walk is a big attraction,” said Daniel Armbruster, AAA Texas spokesperson.

AAA’s holiday forecast

AAA focuses its Memorial Day holiday forecast on people who are taking trips of 50 miles or more away from home during the five-day period from May 23 to May 27.

Friday is expected to be the busiest travel day during the five days.

Armbruster said AAA forecasts people traveling beginning on Thursday, May 23, because many people take a day off that Friday and travel on Thursday.

AAA forecasts by looking at economic macro data and comparing year-over-year data.

Nationally, AAA expects over 43.8 million people to travel this upcoming weekend.

Since millions are expected to hit the road for the holiday, Armbruster said it’s best to leave before 11 a.m. or after 7 p.m.

Gas prices/road trips

Armbruster said gas prices aren’t much different this year compared to last.

You can calculate how much you will need to spend on gas using AAA’s Gas Price Calculator.

“Plug in your starting point, your endpoint and any points in between, and that way you can calculate a fuel estimate for your road trip, and that will give you an idea of what you’ll be paying,” Armbruster said.

Safety is a top concern when traveling, and Armbruster said taking breaks while on the road is essential.

“Pull over every two hours of 100 miles to take breaks so that you’re alert behind the wheel and you avoid drowsy driving,” said Armbruster.

Other safety tips include making sure your car is road trip-ready.

“Look under the hood, make sure those belts and hoses are good to go. Make sure your fluid levels are topped off, your tires are healthy — they have good tread, they’re aired up to the right pressure and just making sure, overall, your vehicle is in good working condition,” Armbruster said.

Armbruster said another thing to be careful of is drunk drivers. Unfortunately, some people might get behind the wheel after drinking, so it’s vital to remain aware of other cars around you, and if you have even one drink, don’t get behind the wheel.

“Holiday weekends in Texas tend to be deadly because of drinking and driving. There hasn’t been a deathless day on Texas roadways in more than 24 years, and 25% of the crashes in Texas are caused by impaired drivers,” said Armbruster.

Lastly, many Texas highways are under construction. If you are driving through a construction zone, watch your speed, give extra following distance, don’t be distracted and move over or slow down if emergency vehicles are stopped on the road.

About the Author

Halee Powers is a KSAT producer primarily focused on digital newscasts and events.

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