holiday travel

Tips to save money and avoid stress during holiday travel

Millions of Americans will drive or fly to visit loved ones over the holiday season. Here are some tips on traveling better

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Whether you’re getting behind the wheel or taking flight, you’ll be among millions of Americans getting ready to travel during this busy holiday season.

“Historically, we see that Thanksgiving is the busiest on the roads but also [in] the airports,” said Anlleyn Venegas with AAA.

AAA says this Thanksgiving, around 49 million people will drive to their destination and almost 5 million will fly to it. And don’t expect things to slow down for Christmas. 

Katherine Ferraro has almost everything ready to travel back to her home country of Colombia during the holidays.

“One of the greatest, biggest reasons I'm going is because my grandfather's 92 years old and I haven't spent Christmas with him in about seven years, so I really want to spend some time with him,” Ferraro said.

It's a non-negotiable trip for her, even though ticket prices have increased by more than 5% in the last year, according to AAA.

Regardless of soaring prices, this year Americans aren’t hesitating to book their trips.

“Even if gas prices go up, even if there's other issues or inflation, they're still traveling, they're still putting their vacation as a priority,” Venegas said.

But there are still ways to save. Here are tips if you’re planning to fly:

Ways to save money on flights

  • Leave a few days earlier to save on airfare
  • Avoid returning on Sundays - flights are usually cheaper on Mondays
  • Consider purchasing travelers insurance, but be sure to read the fine print

If you’re hitting the road, here are some recommendations:

  • Avoid driving the day before Thanksgiving - roads will be 80% more crowded than if you drive before 10 a.m. or after 5 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day
  • Make sure your car is ready - check the wheels, brakes, battery and lights
  • Download a gas price app to find the cheapest options when you’re on the road
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