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About 1.9 million Arizonans to travel for Thanksgiving holiday weekend

(AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

PHOENIX — The roads and skies will get a little crowded over the next few days as Arizonans head out for the Thanksgiving holiday.

According to Triple-A of Arizona’s annual travel forecast, about 1.9 million Arizonans are expected to be on the travel between Wednesday and Sunday of next week. The number of travelers represents a 5.6 percent increase over last year.

“This is the start of the holiday travel rush,” Amy Moreno, senior travel manager for Triple-A, said in a press release. “Historically, Thanksgiving is one of the busiest travel periods of the year and we don’t expect this year to be any different.”

Triple-A estimated that about 1.5 million Arizonans traveling for the holiday will do so by car, a 9 percent increase over last year. The agency said the uptick is likely a result of gas prices, which have plateaued about $2.15 per gallon.

Another 350,000 Arizonans are expected to fly to their Thanksgiving destinations, which represents a drop of 6 percent compared to last year. It’s the first drop in Thanksgiving air travel in four years.

Triple-A forecasts that 48.7 million Americans will travel this year, which would be the busiest Thanksgiving period on U.S. roads and skies since 2007 — the year before the global financial crisis plunged the U.S. economy into a deep recession.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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