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Record Number of Americans Expected to Travel for Holidays

It’s tough to get 30 percent of the U.S. population to agree on anything, but there is something 30 percent of Americans will all be doing in the next two weeks: traveling for the holidays.

Stay on top of winter weather (and bears) when traveling this holiday season. (Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company)

According to AAA, 94.5 million Americans will be traveling at least 50 miles from home between now and the end of the year. That’s a new high, and AAA says it’s the fifth consecutive time the number of Americans traveling for the holidays has risen.

“While economic growth has stagnated and consumer confidence has fallen, we’re well above the doldrums of 2008 when 85.7 million people traveled for the year-end holiday,” AAA New York Manager of Media Relations Robert Sinclair Jr. says in a statement. “AAA is projecting more Americans will travel than ever before to gather with friends and family, exchange presents and ring in the New Year.”

AAA says the vast majority of holiday travelers will be driving to their destination this holiday. Helping those drivers save a little money is the fact that, compared to previous holiday seasons, the average price of a gallon of gas is low. Though gas still costs more than the lowest average price of $3.18 per gallon recorded in November, it’s still less expensive than usual for the end of the year, with a gallon of regular gas currently priced at $3.22.

If you’re hitting the road for the holidays, stay on top of changing weather conditions along your route. Make sure you have plenty of gas and allow plenty of time for rest stops and breaks. Before heading out, check the fluid levels in your car as well as the tire pressure, and adjust as needed. Make sure everyone in the car stays buckled up at all times. Finally, avoid driving while distracted, and never drink and drive.

Are you driving somewhere for the holidays? Share your holiday driving tips below.

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