More Thanksgiving travelers expected - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

More Thanksgiving travelers expected

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NEW YORK (AP) -- A stronger economy and lower gas prices mean Thanksgiving travelers can expect more congested highways this year.

During the long holiday weekend, 46.9 million Americans are expected to go 50 miles or more from home, the highest number since 2007. That's according to travel agency and car lobbying group AAA. That would be a 0.6 percent increase over last year and the seventh straight year of growth.

The figure is still 7.3 percent short of the 50.6 million high point reached in 2007, just before the recession.

Like on every other holiday, the overwhelming majority of travelers -- almost 90 percent -- will be driving. And they will be paying much less at the pump. AAA says the average retail price for gasoline is now $2.15 per gallon, 74 cents cheaper than the same time last year.

Airlines for America, the lobbying group for several major airlines, forecasts 25.3 million passengers will fly on U.S. airlines, up 3 percent from last year. Airfare is basically flat compared to last year, with a mere 0.3 percent or 69 cent average increase, according to the Airlines Reporting Corp., which processes ticket transactions for airlines and travel agencies.

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