AAA forecasts record Thanksgiving travel for New York

Mon, 11/21/2022 12:20 p.m

Almost 3.6 million people will travel in Empire State

From AAA of Western and Central New York

New York is expected to set a record for the number of travelers during the 2022 five-day Thanksgiving holiday season (November 23-27).

AAA and IHS Markit forecast a total of 3,598,428 travelers to the Empire State. If true, it will set a record for Thanksgiving travelers since the tracking began in 2000.

This year’s forecast represents almost 60,000 more travelers in the state than last year. The estimated number would also exceed the pre-pandemic total of 3,579,453 travelers from 2019.

The majority of New Yorkers, approximately 89%, will travel by car. Just over 9% will travel by air, while just under 2% will travel by other modes of transport – including buses, trains and cruises.

Only California (7,365,019) and Texas (3,956,520) are expected to surpass New York for Thanksgiving travelers this year.

Statewide, AAA and IHS Markit forecast 54.6 million travelers during the Thanksgiving holiday season. The total for 2022 will represent a 1.5% increase over 2021, or an additional 800,000 travelers and will account for almost 98% of 2019 volume.

Estimates for air travel and road travel have risen – but the biggest jump, in line with national trend, will come from other forms of travel like buses, trains and cruises. That number is expected to rise 23% nationally this Thanksgiving. In New York, an increase of 18% is expected.

There are several factors that contribute to the robust forecast. Americans want to travel again and spend time with family and friends. With travel restrictions lifted, more people are planning getaways this Thanksgiving.

High gas prices have never stopped Americans from taking vacations, and that’s true for Thanksgiving this year. Travelers plan for gas prices and may cut other expenses, such as eating out. Demand for travel is so high right now that drivers looking to get away this Thanksgiving will do so even though national gas prices are on average 25 cents higher than last year.

To learn more about travel opportunities, visit

As the largest member services organization in New York State, AAA Western and Central New York provides travel, insurance, financial and automotive services to more than 887,000 members. Since its inception in 1900, AAA has been a leading advocate for the safety of all travelers. Visit AAA at