Memorial Day 2023: Tips for planning a trip from Southern California
SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA - If you're among the 42.3 million Americans who plan to travel 50 miles or more from home during Memorial Day week, May 25-30, the AAA Auto Club's travel forecast warns when it's best to get out of the Los Angeles area and especially when to avoid Interstate 5.
AAA expects the six-day period to be the third busiest since the club began measuring Memorial Day traffic a decade ago.
Most people will be traveling by automobile. Auto travel is expected to increase 6 percent from last year, and there will be about 37.1 million drivers on the road - about 2 million more than last year.
The holidays could be among the busiest at the nation's airports since Memorial Day 2005. About 3.4 million people are expected to fly, an 11 percent increase from 2022.
Thanks to lower gasoline prices compared to last year, "drivers should expect more delays this weekend, especially in areas of major cities where locals and Memorial Day travelers will be "mixing it up," said Bob Pishu, transportation analyst at INRIX, AAA's data forecasting partner.
The best time to travel by car is in the morning or evening after 18:00. The most traffic-free days will be Saturday and Sunday. In major cities such as Boston, New York, Seattle and Tampa, travel times are likely to be double what they normally are.
Here are some tips from AAA for Los Angeles area residents who are planning road trips:
When departing, avoid traffic between 3:00 pm and 6:00 pm on both Thursday and Friday. Instead, depart before 1:00 p.m. on Thursday and before 12:00 a.m. on Friday.
Late weekend traffic jams are expected from 12:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Monday and 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday. It is best to leave before 10:00 a.m. on Monday and before 2:00 p.m. or after 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday.
In the Los Angeles area, the route from Los Angeles to San Diego on southbound Interstate 5 will be 47 percent busier than normal at 1 p.m. Sunday, with a travel time of approximately 3 hours and 24 minutes. The return route from Las Vegas to Los Angeles via southbound Interstate 15 will be 41 percent busier than normal at 3 p.m. Monday.
Despite lower gasoline prices, travel will be more expensive overall, largely due to the rising cost of airfare. According to AAA, airfares to popular destinations are up 40 percent this year. International travel is also growing strongly, showing a 250 percent increase over 2022.
Memorial Day 2023 in Southern California promises to be a notable event with massive travel and significant traffic on the roads. With these tips and advice from AAA, you can plan your trip, minimize time spent in traffic and get the most out of your vacation. Stay up-to-date on the latest news and tips for traveling in Southern California at www.orangecounty.socium.network. Have a safe trip!