Little Increase Expected in Maryland Thanksgiving Travel
AAA forecasters say the number of Marylanders expected to travel this Thanksgiving holiday is virtually the same as during last year's holiday period, a reflection of continued caution over spending. Nearly 883,000 Marylanders, less than a half percent increase from last year, are expected to travel 50 miles or more round trip between tomorrow and Sunday, according to AAA Mid-Atlantic. “This year it appears short-to-moderate distance holiday trips primarily by auto are replacing long-haul trips by air,” said Ragina Averella, manager of public and government affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic. The forecast predicts 61,600 Marylanders will travel to their Thanksgiving destinations by air, an almost two percent decrease from last year. It also predicts 18,000 will take buses, trains or boats, an almost 14 percent bump. The State Highway Administration is promoting its 511 information system as a way to stay current with any Thanksgiving travel updates. AAA Mid-Atlantic says part of the reason for the predicted flat travel rate is gas prices, which on average in Maryland are above the national average despite falling from peak prices in September. Locally, watch for Thanksgiving closures on Wisconsin Avenue from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. between Pooks Hill Road and Commerce Lane because of the annual Turkey Chase race.