AAA projects sharp jump in Memorial Day Travel

DENVER, May 8 – AAA Colorado projects 632,000 Coloradans will journey 50 miles or more from home during the Memorial Day holiday weekend, a five percent increase over last year and the highest travel volume for the holiday in 10 years. The Memorial Day holiday travel period is defined as Thursday, May 21 to Monday, May 25.

Lower gas prices spark auto travel
Kicking off the summer driving season, 88 percent of Colorado travelers (556,000 Coloradans) will be driving to their destinations. Travelers continue to benefit from substantially lower gas prices compared to recent years. Today’s Colorado’s average price is $2.52, almost a dollar a gallon less than last year. AAA predicts most U.S. travelers nationwide will pay the cheapest Memorial Day gas prices in at least five years.

AAA Colorado member service counselors report that the most requested TripTik Travel Planner destinations during the summer months are Durango/Mesa Verde, CO, Yellowstone National Park, WY, Badlands/Black Hills, SD and Moab, UT. Reservations are up for lodging near Rocky Mountain National Park, celebrating its 100th anniversary. Denver’s cultural offerings are also stimulating an increase in summer reservations.

Lower air fares also help increase travel
Air travel is expected to increase 2.6 percent with 51,800 Colorado leisure travelers taking to the skies. Average airfares for the top 40 domestic flight routes are two percent cheaper this year, falling to $222 round trip.

Hotel and car rental rates increase
According to AAA’s Leisure Travel Index, the average daily car rental rate this Memorial Day is $19 higher than last year. The average nightly stay in a Three Diamond hotel will cost seven percent more, averaging $182.

AAA Colorado has more than 600,000 members and is an advocate for safety and security for all travelers. As North America’s largest motoring and leisure travel organization, AAA provides over 54 million members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive related services, as well as member exclusive savings.