AAA says more than 5.4 million Californians are expected to travel this Thanksgiving, which is an increase for the fourth year in a row. According to AAA, 4.7 million of those travelers will be on the state's highways. An average family of four is expected to spend an average of $767 over the 4-day holiday weekend and will travel an average of 887 miles.
As part of AAA’s ongoing commitment to provide safety and protection to motorists, AAA’s Tipsy Tow Program offers a free tow for drinking drivers from 6:00 p.m. on November 22 (Thanksgiving Day), until 6:00 a.m. on November 23, in Northern California, Nevada, and Utah. Members and non-members alike can call (800) 222-4357 (AAA-HELP) for a free tow of up to ten miles.
AAA Tips for those traveling long distances:
- Watch weather reports prior to a long-distance drive or before driving in isolated areas. Delay trips when especially bad weather is expected. If you must leave, let others know your route, destination and estimated time of arrival.
- Always make sure your vehicle is in peak operating condition by having it inspected by a AAA Approved Auto Repair facility.
- Keep at least half a tank of gasoline in your vehicle at all times.
- Pack a cell phone programmed with your local AAA's telephone number along with your AAA card, plus blankets, gloves, hats, food, water and any needed medication in your vehicle.
- If you become snow-bound, stay with your vehicle. It provides temporary shelter and makes it easier for rescuers to locate you. Don't try to walk in a severe storm. It's easy to lose sight of your vehicle in blowing snow and become lost.
- Don't over exert yourself if you try to push or dig your vehicle out of the snow.
- Make sure the exhaust pipe isn't clogged with snow, ice or mud. A blocked exhaust could cause deadly carbon monoxide gas to leak into the passenger compartment with the engine running.
- Use whatever is available to insulate your body from the cold. This could include floor mats, newspapers or paper maps.
- If possible, run the engine and heater just long enough to remove the chill and to conserve gasoline.
Also, according to the aviation trade organization, Airlines for America, the busiest travel days are expected to be Wednesday, Sunday, and Monday.
If you traveling from Fresno Yosemite International Airport, check with your airline before leaving for the airport and arrive 2-hours before your departure time.
Other travel reminders:
- Pack only liquids 3 oz or less in a zip-top bag
- Remove bag for X-ray screening
- Remove liquids and electronic devices for X-ray screening
- Have ID and boarding pass out for inspection