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Labor Day weekend travel forecast: What to know before hitting the road, heading to the airport


(NEW YORK) — As the summer winds down, Labor Day weekend travel is about to get underway. Here’s what you need to know before hitting the road or heading to the airport.

The skies

Labor Day weekend is projected to be the third-busiest travel weekend of the year, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

Expedia expects Friday, Sept. 1 and Monday, Sept. 4 to be the weekend’s busiest days to fly.

Domestic flights are averaging $226 per ticket this Labor Day weekend, down 11% from last year and down 20% from 2019, according to Hopper.

American Airlines and United Airlines both said their busiest travel days of the weekend will be Thursday, Aug. 31 and Friday, Sept. 1.

The Transportation Security Administration said it expects an 11% increase in passengers this Labor Day weekend compared to last year. The agency projects its busiest day to be Friday, Sept 1.

The TSA added that this summer has been the busiest summer travel period on record

The roads

The busiest time on the roads over Labor Day weekend will be between 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 31, according to transportation analytics company INRIX. But on Sept. 1, drivers should still expect worse-than-normal traffic between 11 a.m. and 9 p.m.

Car rentals are averaging $41 per day, down 14.5% from this time last year, according to Hopper. The most popular cities for rental car pickups are Orlando, Florida; Las Vegas; and Los Angeles.

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