Economy
8:48 am
Mon November 25, 2013

Getting to Grandma's House for Turkey!

Airlines are getting some competition during the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday.

Monday, November 25, is one of the busiest days during the Thanksgiving holiday as travelers enjoy a long holiday week. Aerial shot of Piedmont Triad International Airport.
Credit Piedmont Triad Authority

According to AAA Carolinas, more than a million motorists are expected to travel 50 miles or less to their destination over the long holiday weekend. This is an increase of 36,000 people from last year. Spokeswoman Angela Daley says economics and convenience are making driving more attractive than flying.

“When gas prices are around $3, people don’t see driving as an expense. But when prices get up around $4, then people begin to restrict their travel", explains Daley. "Also, airfares are down about 1% compared to last year, so the lower prices are not that significant. Plus, flying over the Thanksgiving holiday can be very stressful, security lines are long and many people don’t want to deal with that.”

Kevin Baker agrees that air travel can be stressful. He’s th executive director of the Piedmont Triad Authority.  And because of that,  Baker says, the airport is posting travel reminders as well as offering something extra. “We make sure everyone is aware they should leave a little more time to get through security, get their bags checked and everything given the fact there are that many more folks traveling," says Baker. "We'll also give out free hot coffee, hot chocolate and cookies to help improve the passenger’s experience.” Daley also recommends fuelgaugereport.com and fuelcostcalculator.com for drivers who want to calculate fuel costs prior to their trip.

Most people who fly will leave Monday. Those who decide to drive will begin their holiday on Wednesday.  According to AAA Carolinas, increased highway traffic concentrated Wednesday through Sunday makes the Thanksgiving holiday one of the most dangerous annual holidays.