By car, by plane: Thanksgiving travel by the numbers

Posted November 27, 2019 6:45 a.m. EST
Updated November 27, 2019 7:11 a.m. EST

— Airports and interstates will be packed Wednesday for one of the busiest travel days of the year.

Here’s what you need to know about Thanksgiving travel.

Road travel

It's one of the busiest days on the roads as many people leave work early to head to their Thanksgiving destinations.

According to Google Trends, the worst time to be on the road Wednesday is between 1 p.m. and 7 p.m.

The trends also show that, locally, Interstate 40 East will be the most congested around Garner on Wednesday, while Interstate 40 West will be most congested on Sunday as people head home.

Watch live traffic cameras for travel conditions

All road construction in North Carolina is suspended Wednesday, but AAA experts say there will be a record number of travelers. An estimated 1.54 million North Carolina drivers will travel 50 miles or more from home.

Leave early or late, and travel with caution. The N.C. State Highway Patrol said troopers will be stationed every 20 miles along the I-40 corridor searching for speeders and reckless drivers. Their goal? No fatal crashes.

“This holiday season is a special time for many across our state,” said Col. Glenn McNeill Jr., commander of the State Highway Patrol. “We as an agency will work tirelessly to keep this a joyous time for families and not one marred by the loss of a loved one from a traffic collision.”

Fuel Tracker: Find the lowest local gas prices

There is some good news for people getting behind the wheel. According to AAA, gas prices are lower on Wednesday. At Sam's Club in Raleigh, gas was as low as $2.17 a gallon on Wednesday morning.

Air travel

Raleigh-Durham International expects a record number of people will pass through the airport on Sunday, but Wednesday will be busy too.

People flying out of town are encouraged to check their flight status before leaving home and arrive at the airport at least two hours early.

If you need to park, utilize the airport's Park RDU service, which allows travelers to reserve a parking space online.

Flight Tracker: Any flight, any airport

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