AAA predicts over 40 million Americans will hit the road this holiday week, crowding airports and roads alike. (AP image)

More holiday travelers hitting the road; how to make the trip a little easier

If you're planning on hitting the road this holiday week, you're going to have plenty of company. AAA projects 43.6 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more. Is there any way to make the journey a little less bumpy?

KIRO Radio consulted travel expert Steve Danishek to see if there's anything travelers can do to make trips in this busy time of year a little more manageable.

Ninety percent of holiday travelers, more than 39 million people, will be driving to their destination. This leads Danishek to his first suggestion: leave your car at home.

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"It may be best to either take the train, bus or rent a car. Get a nice new car, unlimited mileage, pay only the rental and gas and drive to your destination and not have to worry about putting the miles on your own vehicle," he says.

AAA predicts just 7 percent of travelers, about 3.1 million, will fly to their destination. But Danishek says flights are expected to be noticeably more expensive than last year.

"That's the first thing to be prepared for is you're going to pay more for travel to and from your holiday destinations."

Danishek suggests flying into alternate airports to save yourself additional cash.

"If you're going to JFK, look at Newark and LaGuardia. If you're going to LA, look at all four airports in the area, same for San Francisco."

The busiest travel day this week is expected to be Wednesday, with many travelers returning home on Sunday.

This is the fourth consecutive year for an increase in holiday travelers since 2008, when Thanksgiving travel fell by 25 percent as the economy faltered.

Frank Shiers, KIRO Radio Anchor
Frank is a man of many talents, including anchoring the weekend news updates. He's filled in for almost every other host on the station. Frank is also a talented cartoonist.
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