Business & Real Estate

AAA projects record number of California holiday travelers

AAA on Thursday predicted that a record 12.1 million-plus Californians will be traveling during the end-of-year holiday season.

That would represent a 3.2 percent increase over 2013.

“Consumer optimism, an increase of disposable income and lower gas prices are enabling many families to plan a holiday getaway,” said AAA Northern California spokeswoman Cynthia Harris. “This year the (Christmas and New Year’s Day) holidays land on a Thursday, creating a holiday travel season that is one day longer than a year ago and the longest since 2008. This makes travel scheduling for the period between Christmas and New Year’s more flexible.”

AAA estimates that about 11 million Californians will travel to and from their holiday destinations by vehicle, up 3.4 percent from last year. Nearly 1 million will travel by air.

Nationally, AAA projects that more than 98 million people will travel 50 miles or more during the holiday period, up 4 percent from last year.

Call The Bee’s Mark Glover, (916) 321-1184.