Memorial Day weekend travel expected to reach pre-pandemic levels

Cars and trucks pack Interstate 10 in downtown Phoenix in this 2018 photo. The COVID-19...
2023 Memorial Day weekend is expected to have travel numbers that are back to pre-pandemic levels. Over 40 million people will be traveling, with 800,000 doing that in Arizona.(Cronkite News)
Published: May. 26, 2023 at 6:45 AM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (13 News) - With more than 42 million people expected to fly or drive somewhere this weekend, experts say we are nearing pre-pandemic levels of travel.

The 42 million is a seven percent increase from 2022, and just a little lower than 2019.

The message from AAA is to get out early especially if you’ll be hitting the roads.

Nearly 90% of all travelers are expected to drive and AAA says that in Arizona about 800,000 people will be heading out.

Between three and six p.m. are expected to be the busiest times, not just for heading out on Friday but also when people plan to return.

“Realistically you want to start your trip before noon if you can help it,” AAA spokesperson Julian Paredes said. “That’ll help you avoid the traffic and congestion at those metropolitan areas. But yeah it’s going to be busy.”

State traffic leaders want you to remember to make safety a top priority, including making sure your car is ready for the long drive.