‘Tis the season of crowded airports and road ways as an expected 109 million people will travel 50 miles or more for holiday season according to the American Automotive Association.
In the time period between Dec.23 and Jan.2, a dramatic bounce-back of nearly 28 million more people will be traveling, resulting in an increase of almost 34 percent from last year and 92 percent from 2019 numbers.
Airlines expect to see a 184% increase from last year.
“Americans who canceled their vacations in 2020 want to gather with family and friends for the holidays this year, although they will still be mindful of the pandemic and the new omicron variant,” said Paula Twidale, senior vice president of AAA Travel. “With vaccines widely available, conditions are much different and many people feel a greater level of comfort with travel.”
According to the AAA, road trips remain the top model of travel during the holiday season as more than 100 million people are anticipated to hit the road. Over 6 million are expected to fly high in air travel while three million are booking buses, trains and cruises.
San Diego is ranked by the AAA among the top ten destinations for travelers with booking data through October. There is an uptick in ticket prices for Christmas week as booking data reveals five percent increase from last year. Flights around New Years see a significant increase of 27 percent according to the AAA.
Members of the public are urged to consult the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance when planning gatherings or travel.
“It’s essential to know requirements and recommendations based on your vaccination status, where you’re traveling from and your destination,” the AAA said in a statement.
AAA’s COVID-19 Travel Restrictions Map displays closures, recommendations and requirements when traveling in the U.S. The CDC has an interactive map with recommendations and information about restrictions for international travel.
Masks are a requirement for anyone traveling on U.S. public transportation and within transportation hubs such as airports.
The CDC also recommends everyone wear a mask indoors in public places in an area of substantial or high transmission.