Arizona holiday travel numbers expected to increase this year

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It’s that time of year for holiday travel. Earlier today we spoke with AAA’s Aldo Vasquez about what to expect at airports and roadways and how best to avoid any unnecessary holiday travel stress.

Vazquez said although there has been a rebound in travel numbers from the pandemic, we are still not going to see pre-pandemic numbers for holiday travel this year.

“Travel (is) going to be about what we saw in 2017 and they’re going to be about 8% of what we saw before the pandemic,” Vazquez said.

Vazquez agrees that this rebound in travel numbers is largely due to people trying to make up for lost time.

“We’re going to see about three times as many people packing into the airports this year than we saw last year, here in Arizona about 2 million people are going to be traveling and just about 90% of those people who are going to be traveling they’re going to be hitting the road,” Vazquez said.

Vazquez said another likely reason is the growing confidence in the efficacy of the approved covid-19 vaccines, however, he advised travelers to not let their guards down and still safely navigate travel during the pandemic.

With regards to gas prices, Vazquez said AAA does not anticipate them to drop any time soon but they are still waiting to see what effect the omicron variant will have on oil prices, and gas prices still remain significantly higher than this point last year.

Aldo Vazquez, AAA spokesperson

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