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Thanksgiving Travel Likely Down This Year

By Jeffrey Hess | Published 22 Nov 2013 05:12pm | comments
Travelers wait for the ticket at the airport in Jackson.

Mississippians are among the millions of Americans traveling to a thanksgiving destination this week., but, as MPB's Jeffrey Hess reports economic concern could be decreasing the total number of travelers.

An agent at the Jackson-Evers international airport helps 18-year old Bryanna Lebeaux get her ticket for her flight to Orlando, Florida to be with her family.

Lebeaux is one of the thousands of Mississippians traveling this thanksgiving holiday.

"It is very important. Thanksgiving is the most important holiday in my family. It is good family time, so I am excited to get back," Lebeaux said.

Wendy Campbell with the airport says they are excepting several thousand Mississippians to fly out during the Thanksgiving wek this year with total numbers similar to last year.

"Since the Thanksgiving season is later they have a longer travel period. So the numbers are pretty much in line with last year, just spread out over a longer period of time," Campbell said.

But  according to the the travel monitoring company Triple-A, lingering concerns over the government shutdown, economic sluggishness and the uncertainty over health care reform could be depressing travel numbers.

Michael Wright with Triple-A says holiday travel numbers have never fully recovered to their pre-recession peak.

"For the most part things have been getting better and we have seen improvements in the number of folks that are trevaling. But this is ever so slightly going to be down this year over the Thanksgiving holiday season. Whether or not that is going to be true of the Christmas/New Year's holiday season is yet to be seen," Wright said.

43-million Americans are expected to travel some time over the Thanksgiving holiday, around 90-percent will drive.


Travelers wait for the ticket at the airport in Jackson.



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