Fourth of July travel is ex­pected to rise

Los Angeles Times - - BUSINESS BEAT - By Nick Shively ni­cholas. shively@ latimes. com

Lower ga­so­line prices are driv­ing more South­ern Cal­i­for­ni­ans to drive — and f ly — this hol­i­day week­end.

The Au­to­mo­bile Club of South­ern Cal­i­for­nia pre­dicts that more than 2.98 mil­lion South­land res­i­dents will travel for the Fourth of July week­end, a 0.5% in­crease from last year. That’s the sec­ond high­est num­ber of trav­el­ers in the last 15 years, the Auto Club said.

Ga­so­line prices are 60 cents a gallon lower than at this time last year, with the av­er­age Cal­i­for­nia price at $ 3.45 a gallon.

In ad­di­tion to lower fuel prices, the pro­jected travel in­crease is at­trib­uted to a grow­ing sense of well- be­ing among con­sumers be­cause of a strength­en­ing econ­omy, de­clin­ing un­em­ploy­ment and im­prov­ing wages and hous­ing val­ues.

Most va­ca­tion­ers are ex­pected to travel by car, with a 0.4% in­crease from last year to 2.4 mil­lion, the Auto Club said. The num­ber of trav­el­ers who are ex­pected to f ly to their des­ti­na­tion will in­crease about 1.4%.

The busiest travel day is an­tic­i­pated to be July 2, ac­cord­ing to the Or­b­itz In­sider In­dex.

Top des­ti­na­tions for South­ern Cal­i­for­ni­ans this year in­clude Las Ve­gas, San Diego, San Fran­cisco, the Cal­i­for­nia Cen­tral Coast, Yosemite and the Grand Canyon.

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