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Another Busy Travel Holiday Expected

November 22, 2005

Another Busy Travel Holiday Expected
November 22, 2005 – Travel this holiday season is expected to be as busy as ever, despite gas prices and airline bankruptcies. According to AAA, 37.3 million Americans are estimated to travel 50 miles or more away from home this Thanksgiving. This number is up slightly from 37 million travelers a year ago. About 83 percent of those making trips will do so by car, about the same percent as a year ago.

While gas prices have declined since Labor Day this year, prices remain 13 percent above those at Thanksgiving last year.

Growing low-fare airlines have helped lower the cost of leisure fares this year as well. The AAA survey found that leisure fares — those purchased three weeks or more in advance — are down 4.8 percent from a year ago. But those cheap fares were somewhat tougher to come by this year, according to the group.

The limit on the number of cheap seats offered has helped take the average U.S. airfare up between 5 to 8 percent over a year ago since July, according to the Air Transport Association. The group estimates about 7.8 million passengers will make round-trip flights this holiday period, essentially unchanged from last year.

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