AAA Predicts Around 700 Million Trips This Summer

As the United States continues to reopen following coronavirus-related closures, AAA Travel is predicting that Americans will take 700 million trips this summer.

According to the 2020 AAA Summer Travel Forecast, Americans are once again making travel plans, but most are being cautious, which has resulted in a 15-percent decline in journeys as compared to last July through September.

The 2020 forecast marks the first decline in summer travel since 2009.

The study found that 97 percent of respondents would be traveling this summer via road trip, while air travel is expected to drop by an astounding 73 percent. Rail, cruise ship and bus travel are also expected to fall by 86 percent.

“Americans will get out and explore this summer though they’re taking a ‘wait and see approach’ when it comes to booking and are likely to book more long weekend getaways than extended vacations,” AAA Travel senior vice president Paula Twidale said in a statement. “When they do venture out, the greatest share of travelers – 683 million – will take to the road to satisfy their wanderlust.”

As for where Americans are traveling, cities that draw large crowds have dropped in popularity, while destinations like Denver, Portland and Nashville are being talked about more by travelers concerned about social distancing.

A significant reason road trips are more popular than ever—aside from the coronavirus-related fears—is the overall cost. National gas prices are expected to average $2.25 a gallon, a 15-percent decline from the $2.66 average seen last summer.

AAA Travel also released the top 10 most popular hotel destinations for the summer:

1. Las Vegas

2. Orlando

3. San Diego

4. New York City

5. Chicago

6. Nashville

7. Atlanta

8. Houston

9. Portland

10. San Antonio

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