ORLANDO, Florida – Americans can add low gas prices to the list of things that they are thankful for this Thanksgiving. That’s because gas prices during this year’s Thanksgiving holiday travel season are expected to be the lowest in seven years, according to AAA’s Travel Forecast for 2015.
Drivers nationwide continue to experience significant yearly savings in the price of gas and AAA estimates that consumers are saving nearly $265 million on gasoline every day compared to a year ago. This has helped boost disposable income, enabling many Americans to travel this Thanksgiving. According to AAA, most U.S. drivers will pay the lowest Thanksgiving gas prices since 2008. Today’s national average price for a gallon of gasoline is $2.15, 65 cents less than the average price on Thanksgiving last year ($2.80).
Americans traveling for Thanksgiving highest in eight years
AAA Travel forecasts 46.9 million Americans will journey 50 miles or more from home during the Thanksgiving holiday, a 0.6 percent increase over the 46.6 million people who traveled last year and the most since 2007. With 300,000 additional holiday travelers, this marks the seventh consecutive year of growth for Thanksgiving travel. The Thanksgiving holiday travel period is defined as Wednesday, November 25 to Sunday, November 29.
“This Thanksgiving, more Americans will carve out time to visit friends and family since 2007,” said Marshall Doney, AAA President and CEO. “While many people remain cautious about the economy and their finances, many thankful Americans continue to put a premium on traveling to spend the holiday with loved ones.”
Nearly 42 million Americans will take a holiday road trip this Thanksgiving, an increase of 0.7 percent over last year. Air travel is expected to increase by 0.1 percent, with 3.6 million Americans flying to their holiday destinations. Travel by other modes of transportation, including cruises, trains and buses, will decrease 1.4 percent this Thanksgiving, to 1.4 million travelers.
“One holiday gift has come early this year. Americans will likely pay the lowest Thanksgiving gas prices since 2008. Lower prices are helping boost disposable income, and enabling families to kick off the holiday season with a Thanksgiving getaway,” continued Doney.
More Americans visiting Florida due to lower gas prices
Lower gas prices have also fueled record-breaking domestic travel to Florida. VISIT FLORIDA estimated that 22.1 million domestic visitors traveled to Florida in the third quarter of 2015, reflecting an 8.2% increase over the same period last year. This increase in domestic visitors more than offset a 1.8% decline in overseas visitors and a 1.4% decline in Canadian visitors who have been impacted by a stronger U.S. dollar.
Image credit: Wikimedia