RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Close to 40 million people plan to travel for the holiday weekend, according to AAA. Of those, 35 million will by vehicle and 3 million by air.

Whichever way you choose to move, AAA predicts you’ll be joined by more people than the last two years. The organization predicts an increase of more than 8 percent over 2021. Air travel is expected to be up 25 percent over last year. AAA said those travel volumes are nearing pre-pandemic levels.

INRIX, transportation analytics company, predicts the biggest travel delays will be the days before the holiday weekend. They said this was especially true for the afternoons of Thursday, May 26 and Friday, May 27.

“Even with a significant increase in gas prices, we expect a large jump in holiday driving compared to the last few years”, says Bob Pishue, Transportation Analyst, INRIX. 

It could take drivers in major cities like New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Atlanta double the normal travel time to get to their destination. Each of these cities will have more than 100 percent increase in travel time, according to INRIX.

If traveling by vehicle, AAA recommends choosing off-peek hours when possible. Below is INRIX analysis of the worst and best times to travel for the holiday weekend.

Worst travel time:


Best travel time:

ThursdayBefore 6:00am or After 9:00pm
FridayBefore 7:00am or After 9:00pm
SaturdayBefore 10:00am
SundayBefore 10:00am
MondayBefore 11:00am