Memorial Day weekend travel to increase

Picture perfect weather and warm for may surf are the greeting committee for those who hit the beach early.

All reasons why Ocean City is expecting big crowds this weekend and all summer. Plus, half of the boardwalk has been rebuilt, airfares are high and most importantly gas prices are dropping.

The average price of regular unleaded is down four cents from last week.

The national average currently stands at $3.68. In the District, you’re paying about $3.77, in Maryland, its $3.61 and in Virginia the average is $3.49.

This comes as AAA projects 34.8 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more from home over the holiday weekend.

That's up 1.2 percent from one year ago. A survey of travelers found 53 percent saying pump prices would not impact their travel plans.

AAA Mid-Atlantic says 900,000 drivers from the D.C. region will go to the beach or beyond this holiday weekend.

“I’m leaving as early as possible, because traffic is the worst and you’ll be in standstill traffic for like five hours if you don’t,” said Alexandria resident Ashley Oliver.

Of the remaining 47 percent who say gas prices will have an impact on their weekend travels, nine percent said they were planning a shorter trip, while about a third said they would economize in other areas -- such as staying at a lower priced hotel or staying with relatives.

AAA's survey finds that more than seven percent of holiday travelers -- or more than 2.5 million people -- will fly during the holiday weekend.

That's down 5.5 percent from last year.

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