Record One-Third in US Will Travel for Holidays

Growing labor market, cheap gas spurring Americans' wanderlust
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 15, 2015 11:21 AM CST
Travelers at Will Rogers World Airport in Oklahoma City walk through the passenger concourse Nov. 25, 2015, after arriving on one of the busiest travel days of the year in the United States.   (EDMOND SUN OUT, OKLAHOMA GAZETTE OUT)

(Newser) – An expanding labor market and the cheapest gas we've seen since 2009 have led to a record-setting number, the AAA travel group notes: 100.5 million people, or about one-third of the US population, will be traveling over the holidays, USA Today reports. That number, which represents folks who plan on venturing at least 50 miles from home between Dec. 23 and Jan. 3, denotes the seventh consecutive year of an increase since 2008's low of 85.7 million.

Of those 100.5 million— the first time that milestone number has been reached, per AAA—about 91% of travelers will be behind the wheel, 5.7% will take to the air, and the remainder will hop on a cruise, bus, or train, USA Today notes. "Rising incomes and low gas prices are helping to fill stockings this year, and more people than ever will choose to spend those savings on travel," Marshall Doney, CEO of AAA, says in a press release. (Beware these travel scams.)

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