CLIFTON PARK, N.Y. (NEWS10) — A busy weekend ahead for Memorial Day travelers, with many hitting the road despite soaring gas prices. AAA said that 39.2 million people will be traveling 50 miles or more this holiday weekend, representing more than an 8.3% increase from a year ago, but not quite back to pre-pandemic levels.
Experts say Friday afternoon between 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. is the most popular travel timeframe. Traveling between 9 p.m. on Friday and 10 a.m. on Saturday might help you avoid any traffic jams.
“You’re likely going to see delays, especially in those typical areas if you’re heading south through the city and Jersey, out toward Boston,” said Eric Stigberg, AAA Northway Managing Director of Public Affairs. “The big cities are going to be congested.”
Gas prices are at an all-time high. The average price in Albany is around $4.89, but experts say the high prices aren’t stopping travel. Still, there are opportunities to save money in other ways.
“Stay at cheaper hotels, eat fast-food, instead of sit-down dining, but again, it doesn’t prevent people from traveling– it just causes them to adjust their spending,” Stigberg said.
The cost of airfare is also on the rise. “Longterm, as we look further into the summer, I don’t think we’ll see prices decreasing when it comes to traveling expenses.,” said Stigberg. “Airline prices are on the rise, hotel prices on the rise, car rentals all on the rise. Vacationing is certainly more costly.”