Rising Gas Prices Not Stopping Holiday Travelers
July 1, 2021
By Jessica Mathews / email@example.com
Gas prices are up across the state but that’s not stopping more than a million Michiganders from hitting the road this holiday weekend.
AAA Michigan reports that gas prices have jumped 9 cents within the last two days. The week may have started out with a drop in prices but AAA Michigan Spokesperson Adrienne Woodland says that is no longer the case. She says the jump can primarily be attributed to high crude oil prices and an increase in demand heading into the Independence Day holiday. Woodland said the current average as of Wednesday was $3.20 a gallon for regular unleaded – on Monday it was $3.11. While that’s not a record, it is among some of the highest gas prices seen since 2014.
Woodland says what is a record though is the amount of people expected to be traveling for the Independence Day holiday. The official 4th of July holiday period is defined as starting today and lasting through July 5th.
She says travel is definitely expected to rebound compared to 2020 and a record number of people will be hitting the road. In Michigan, AAA is expecting 1.5 million residents to travel – with the majority or over 1.4 million people taking road trips. Woodland says that is the largest number ever recorded for those traveling by automobile for the 4th of July holiday since AAA began compiling numbers in 2000.
Total travel in Michigan is said to be up 22% from last year. Woodland says automobile travel is up 20% while air travel up 127% compared to last year. To put that in perspective a bit for air travel, Woodland says AAA is expecting over 55,000 Michiganders to travel by airplane over the holiday period but that’s still down when compared to 2019 when over 69,000 people were expected to travel. Across the nation, AAA is expecting over 47 million people to travel.
Meanwhile, the Michigan Department of Transportation announced that it is suspending work and lifting lane restrictions wherever possible this holiday weekend to ease congestion and delays for holiday travelers and increase safety.