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AAA: Dec. 20 is the worst travel day for Christmas this year

By: Fiza Pirani, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

record-breaking 112.5 million Americans are expected to travel for the year-end holidays this year, according to the American Automobile Association, a 4.4 percent increase over last year. According to new data, travelers should avoid hitting the road Dec. 20.

“Strong economic growth fueled by robust consumer spending continues to drive strong demand for seasonal travel,” AAA’s Bryan Shilling said in a Dec. 13 news release. “With a record-breaking one-third of the country choosing to travel this holiday, roadways and airports are sure to be busy.”

AAA and global analytics company INRIX predict 102.1 million folks will be hitting the roads.

“With a record-level number of travelers hitting the road this holiday, drivers must be prepared for delays in major metro areas – with Thursday, December 20 being the nation’s worst day to travel,” Trevor Reed, transportation analyst at INRIX, said in a statement. “Our advice is to avoid traveling during peak commuting hours. If schedules allow, leave bright and early, or after the morning commute.”

Major cities will get the brunt of busy travel. Atlanta, New York City, Boston and Houston drivers will have three times the normal travel time, according to AAA.

Approximately 6.7 million people will be traveling by air this year, the most in 15 years.

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