AAA South

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  Almost 47 million Americans are projected to travel 50 miles or more from home for Thanksgiving, according to AAA: they should have a few more bucks in their pockets for the holidays.

“Busy roads, busy airports as is usual during Thanksgiving, but about 300,000 more travelers than last year,” said Mark Jenkins at AAA-South in Tampa. That figure is up 0.6% from Thanksgiving 2014, and the most in eight years.

The travel period is defined as Wednesday, November 25 through Sunday, November 29. 

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While the summer travel season for 2015 is in the books, many Floridians are planning at least an overnight vacation sometime this fall.

Traveling in the fall is actually more popular than many people think. According to a recent survey by the AAA auto club, about seven in ten Floridians are planning to take a trip of 50 miles or more away from home in the next three months.




Thirty-five and a half million Americans will travel 50 miles or more from home this Labor Day weekend, according to Triple-A. And they can expect to find the lowest Labor Day gas prices in a decade. 

Last week, the price of crude dropped to below the $40 a barrel mark, the lowest since February, 2009. The current national average price is $2.44 per gallon - 16 cents lower than a week ago, and 99 cents lower than this time last year. Florida’s average is $2.29.

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With gas prices falling at the fastest rate since January, look for more people on the road during the upcoming Labor Day holiday.

“We should continue to see gas prices falling right now because of crude oil prices,” said Mark Jenkins with AAASouth in Tampa.

Self-serve regular averages $2.51 per gallon across Florida. In Pensacola, the average is $2.48 – down nine cents from a month ago and $0.87  a gallon less than early August, 2014.

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The number of  Americans hitting the road this Independence Day weekend is expected to be up 0.07% compared to last year, according to AAA.

The auto club projects 41.9 million people will travel 50 miles or more from their homes during the holiday weekend, which runs from Wednesday July 1 to Sunday July 5. AAA’s Mark Jenkins says 85%, or about 35 million travelers, will drive to their destinations.

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We are now in the “100 Deadliest Days” on the highways, the period between Memorial Day and Labor Day when crash fatalities historically climb. AAA’s focus in that period is on drivers between 15-19 years of age.

According to a 2013 study by the auto club’s Foundation for Traffic Safety, roughly 75% of the 372,000 injuries and 2,900 fatalities in auto accidents in which a teenager was driving, were people other than the driver.

AAA is projecting the upcoming Memorial Day weekend as one of the most traveled – if not the most-traveled – in history.

Just over 37 million Americans are projected to travel 50 miles or more from home during the long weekend – from Thursday, May 21 to Monday, May 25.  That’s a 4.7% increase from last year, and is the highest travel volume for Memorial Day in a decade.

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If a number of factors fall into place, motorists could be enjoying another round of lower gas prices in time for summer vacations.

AAA South in Tampa says gas prices are falling at the rate of about $0.05 per week, on pace to be about $0.40 per gallon lower than right now. But Mark Jenkins at the Auto Club adds that there are no guarantees, with a lot of factors playing into fluctuations.

Photo via Flickr//Richard Masoner

  Sub $2 per gallon gasoline appears to be a thing of the recent past, with prices jumping more than a dime last week across the Southeast. 

Self-serve regular in Pensacola averages $2.18 a gallon, according to AAA. That’s up a dime from last week, but $1.10 lower than a year ago. Much of the increase is seasonal.

Motorists are getting an extra gift this holiday season – the lowest gasoline prices in about five years. That includes the cheapest Christmas Day gas since 2008.

As of Monday, the auto club reported self-serve regular averages $2.26 per gallon in Pensacola. That’s 41 cents less than last month, and 96 cents a gallon lower than one year ago. Mark Jenkins at Triple-A South in Tampa says that’s also the lowest among Florida’s metro areas.