Here’s the good news for July Fourth travelers: There is a somewhat lower chance that storms will disrupt travel heading into the holiday weekend.
But the mishaps of the past week have shown that if severe storms do emerge again, the nation’s air travel system will have a hard time getting people to their destinations on time.
And this weekend, there would be a record number of summer travelers affected.
AAA is projecting roughly 51 million people will travel 50 miles or more from home in the coming days — up more than 4% from 2022 and setting a new milestone for the holiday.
Both car and air travel volumes are expected to set new highs: AAA projects 4.17 million people will fly to their destinations for Independence Day weekend, an increase of 11.2% over 2022 and 6.6% over 2019. The share of air travelers is 8.2% — the highest percentage in nearly 20 years, it said.
“We’ve never projected travel numbers this high for Independence Day weekend,” Paula Twidale, senior vice president of AAA Travel, said in a statement. Despite fewer overall flights and higher airfares, she said, “consumers are not cutting back on travel this summer.”