Busy holiday travel season about to peak

Dec 28, 2023, 2:04 PM | Updated: Dec 29, 2023, 11:40 am

SALT LAKE CITY – Flipping the calendar past Christmas means a return home for many holiday travelers.

According to the American Automobile Association, Thursday is expected to be one of the busiest travel days for the entire week.

AAA projected more than 115 million people will travel across the country for Christmas and the New Year.

The rush is expected all week but it should peak Thursday between 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. the auto club said. This is the time that if you are not a fan of traffic, it is best to make the journey out of the city.

“If you’re driving, you can expect traffic in any metropolitan area. Pretty much, you can expect it to be just as busy today as you saw like when you first started that trip,” said Julian Paredes, AAA spokesperson.

Paredes said things likely will not return to traffic as usual until early January. This year, he said, is a big bounce-back year in the air and on the road.

“It’s definitely been busier than last year. The last couple years have been down for travel just because of the pandemic, but it’s been growing year over year,” Paredes said.  “2023 definitely seems like the biggest year since the pandemic. One of the biggest since 2019 – which was a record year.”

Looking ahead to New Year’s Eve, AAA expects to see roads more congested on Saturday, specifically between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m.

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Busy holiday travel season about to peak