Labor Day travel numbers way up from last year - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Labor Day travel numbers way up from last year

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WAUSAU (WAOW) -- Travel experts predict this Labor Day holiday will be the biggest travel weekend in years. That could cause some congestion on the roads.

Experts say a sign of the economic times is travel.

“If the economy is doing bad people aren't going to spend money on travel, they are going to save it for the necessities in life because travel is just fun and it's extra," explained Brent Dabler, AAA sales and service agent.

According to new AAA travel numbers, this is a good year.

“We're predicting 34.7 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more from their home and that's an increase from last year,” said Dabler.

This Labor Day weekend, 85% of those travelers will hit the road. Eight percent will fly. In Wisconsin, 731,000 people will be out and about.

“It's a slow and gradual increase because consumers are feeling more confident,” said Dabler.

Franklin Pflieger lives in Florida. He makes the trek north every year for the holiday weekend.

"We normally come up two weeks before and right after Labor Day we leave to go back," explained Pflieger. “It's normally pretty good after the holiday. One day we left during the Labor Day weekend and it was really congested."

Wisconsin state patrol officials say that's the downfall to the busy weekend, all the cars on the road.

"There's a lot of people traveling up north for last weekend in summer, there's a lot of local events going on as well,” said Sgt. Steve Krueger.

That's why state patrol will be out in full force, making sure these streets stay safe.

"If you choose to drive aggressively, if you choose to drive drunk, we're going to be looking for you,” warned Krueger.

Because everyone can agree this holiday weekend, it's all about having fun. The weather this weekend isn't predicted to be the greatest. But, travelers say they are going to make the most of the unofficial end of summer.

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