Thursday August 11th, 2022 5:41AM

AAA: Pack your snacks and your patience if you're traveling

By Jonathan O'Brien Anchor/Reporter
  Contact Editor

More than 30 million Americans will hit the road for this Memorial Day weekend, and one million of those will be from the Peach State, according to AAA projections. 

"This is going to be a very, very busy Memorial Day weekend for travelers," AAA Georgia spokeswoman Montrae Waiters told AccessWDUN. "By car alone, we're looking at 1.1 million [Georgians] that are going to be hitting the road this Memorial Day weekend, in spite of what's going on with inflation and gas prices."

Instead of decreasing demand from travelers choosing to stay home, Waiters said they see another trend: travelers are employing cost-cutting measures on vacation. 

"Doing things like maybe staying in a less expensive hotel, if they're going to travel," she explained. "Or even spending less on shopping, dining or entertainment." 

The projections of travel volumes reflect a 4.9% increase in the number of travelers compared to 2021. Analysts believe Americans are anxious to move on from the COVID lockdowns and protocols, which put a damper on the "unofficial start to the summer" for two years. 

Peak travel times were projected to be on Thursday, but they will remain elevated for the next several days. Waiters said the lightest day on the roadways would be Memorial Day. 

If you will be taking to the skies for the holiday weekend, AAA reminds Americans to allow for extra time at the airport. 

The Atlanta Journal-Consitution reported this week that more than 2 million passengers would pass through the concourses of the 'World's Busiest Airport' over the next several days. 

"If you're leaving out of Atlanta, it might be a good idea for travelers to look at maybe leaving three hours in advance to get to the airport to deal with the congestion of getting through security, parking, and so forth," Waiters said. 

You can check security wait times at Hartsfield-Jackson here

Traveling on the roads will be challenging enough, but bringing children along can make things more complicated and expensive. 

"It's going to be a lot of stopping and using the bathroom," Waiters explained. "So what about reducing that food cost by packing snacks and water." 

She also reminded travelers to download the free AAA gas prices app and only check it when they're not driving. 

"To enjoy this great Memorial Day weekend, we want you to arrive safely," she said. 

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