Roads to be slightly busier than last year for Thanksgiving


An estimated 3.5 million Southern Californians and 888,314 Arizonans will be traveling for Thanksgiving this year according to AAA, an increase for both states over last year. So roads can be expected to be a little busier than last year, which the auto club attributes to lower gas prices and an improving economy.

Gas prices are an average of around 40 cents lower than this time last year. Southern California residents are expected to travel at pre-recession levels this holiday weekend. Wednesday traffic in the greater Los Angeles basin is predicted to be the worst in the nation, with trips on metro area freeways taking 36 percent longer than average.

The Arizona Department of Transportation is saying that there will be no construction-related road closures between Wednesday afternoon and Monday morning, which should help ensure that traffic flows as smoothly as possible. According to a press release, “ADOT and its contractors will hold off on work requiring closures as the busy holiday travel season gets underway. Motorists should focus on staying alert and obeying speed limits, especially in areas where existing work zones are in place.”

Arizona is among the top five destinations for Southern California travelers and it seems likely to be true the other way around, so we should expect I-10 and I-40 to be busy throughout this week, even on rural desert stretches, in addition to other highways. Parker Live recommends considering Mohave Road (through Ehrenberg, AZ) too – see HERE.

According to IHS Global Insight, travelers are planning to spend about $700 this year on their Thanksgiving trips, and the average trip distance will be 434 miles.

AAA suggests using real-time traffic tools online before hitting the road.


  1. Natasha Chapman

    Slightly? O-m-g, so bad in LHC I was late picking up pooches from groomers and the poor gal said she missed a hair appointment. 🙁

  2. Kimmy Couch Garcia

    No doubt now that gas prices are below $3.00.

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