AAA says Friday will be busiest travel day of Memorial Day weekend

(MGN / Jay Galvin / CC BY 2.0)
Published: May. 25, 2023 at 3:29 PM CDT
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(WSAW) - More than 800,000 people from Wisconsin say they’ll travel 50 miles or more during the Memorial Day weekend.

According to AAA, that’s 6.7% more than last year and only 3% short of the all-time high in 2019.

“Memorial Day weekend is the kickoff to what promises to be a very busy summer travel season,” said Debbie Haas, Vice President of Travel for AAA – The Auto Club Group. “Despite various inflationary pressures, consumer spending is strong, and Americans still want to travel. Because of that, we’ve seen demand come roaring back, just shy of pre-pandemic levels in Wisconsin.”

AAA uses May 25 to May 29 as the Memorial Day weekend travel period. As many travelers head out on Friday morning, traffic will sometimes get heavy. The increased traffic means more risk of minor and major crashes. A doctor from UW Health says limiting distractions will keep everyone on the road safe.

“We’re going to see more volume. So definitely across the state of Wisconsin and across the nation, really things that impact crashes are speed, distraction, and definitely alcohol consumption. So limiting those things and making sure we’re doing the best that we can, will help make sure that we’re safe on the road,” said Rishelle Eithun, Pediatric Injury Prevention Program Manager at American Family Childrens Hospital.

Friday, May 26 is expected to be the busiest travel day. The best times to travel by car, during the holiday weekend, will be in the morning or evening after 6 p.m. The lightest traffic days will be Saturday and Sunday.