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AAA Mid-Atlantic: More than 1 million Marylanders expected to travel for Thanksgiving

About one in six Marylanders is expected to travel for the Thanksgiving weekend, the most since 2005, according to a AAA Mid-Atlantic projection.

The 1.07 million Marylanders expected to travel between Wednesday and Sunday of the holiday weekend represents a 3.4 percent increase, the auto club said. It mirrors a 3.3 percent increase expected nationwide, to nearly 51 million Americans.

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“Across the country, and in Maryland, this Thanksgiving weekend is expected to be the busiest for the holiday in more than 10 years,” said AAA Mid-Atlantic spokeswoman Ragina Cooper Averella in a statement. “A strong economy and labor market are generating rising incomes, driving up the confidence in consumers who are more willing to spend on travel this year.”

Most Maryland travelers — 91 percent, or 967,100 — are expected to drive to their destinations for Thanksgiving, according to AAA. About 79,200, or seven percent, will fly to their destinations, and about 22,500 will take buses, trains, cruises or other modes of travel, the auto club said.

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The number of Marylanders flying for Thanksgiving is expected to grow by 4.7 percent, the largest increase of any mode of transportation. Cooper Averella attributed the rise to less expensive flights and a better economy.

“With more money in their pockets, consumers are willing to spend on air travel this year, which tends to be the more expensive mode of travel,” she said. “However, this year flying for the holiday is not as expensive as other years with average airfares the lowest in five years.”

With a slew of craft cocktail and elevated food options and other shopping options, it’s clear that BWI Marshall Airport has upped the ante as far as offering luxurious options. (Lloyd Fox / Baltimore Sun)

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