Thanksgiving to be one of busiest travel days in two decades

Published: Nov. 23, 2022 at 9:50 PM CST
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TAYLOR, Mo. (WGEM) - Thanksgiving is Thursday and many people took Wednesday to get to their destinations, on one of the busiest travel days of the year.

“The pies and homemade sweet potato casseroles, those are awesome. Just the comfort of family,” said Quincy resident Ryan Sager.

To get to the comfort of family and all that great food, Sager said he’ll have to drive an hour and a half tonight from Quincy.

“I’m going to Springfield, Illinois, visiting my family,” Sager said. “So, it’ll be pretty interesting. Some of them coming from Texas, so that’s an every other year thing.”

Meanwhile, Jeff Sparks is coming from Macomb.

After making a stop in Taylor, Missouri his final destination is Kirksville, Missouri.

“I’m about halfway, so pretty good, but I’m by myself because I had to work today,” Sparks said. “My wife and kids have already made the trip so they are there right now. I’m going to meet them and see the rest of our family.”

AAA predicts more than 54 million people will travel 50 miles or more from home this Thanksgiving. It’s projected to be the third busiest travel year for Thanksgiving since AAA began tracking it in 2000.

Sager said he prepared for his trip by telling his friends and family where he’s going in case of an emergency. His biggest concern while traveling isn’t getting stuck in traffic, it’s hitting deer.

“I gotta be careful of the deer,” he said. “So, going on 72 and that’s one of the biggest, going through Pike County.”

Sparks said while traffic was not bad Wednesday night, he has seen more law enforcement on the roads.

“A few highway patrolmen, but luckily I was watching my speed as well and the traffic today hasn’t been too bad, so I’m sure it’ll be much worse tomorrow,” Sparks said.

AAA said most travelers will drive a car for Thanksgiving this year, compared to other types of transportation. They said more than 1.4 million Americans are going out of town by bus, train or cruise ship. That’s a 23% increase from last year.

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