What to expect on DC’s roads after Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving may be over, but that certainly doesn’t mean traffic in the D.C. area is.

While Friday was comparatively light in terms of vehicles on the road — unless you were headed out to do some shopping, the same cannot be said of what’s anticipated this weekend, according to WTOP Traffic Reporter Dave Dildine.

“Homebound traffic starts heating up on Saturday afternoon and peaks Sunday afternoon,” Dildine said. “Southbound evening volume delays are commonly observed on I-270 near Frederick, Maryland. The stragglers will also lead to slowing on I-95 throughout the weekend and on Monday and Tuesday as well.”

Dildine said that means Saturday morning is normally quiet and a good time to be on the road.

Sunday afternoon usually marks the peak of the homebound rush but, unlike the getaway, it’s not infused with commuters and “anxious errand-running, so it’s mostly focused on I-95, I-270 and the Bay Bridge.”

Be sure to get the latest traffic updates at 103.5FM on the 8s and at WTOP.com.

As WTOP previously reported, millions hit the road and flew the friendly skies Wednesday ahead of Turkey Day.

AAA predicted that more than 1.3 million D.C.-area residents would travel during Thanksgiving, an increase of more than 2% over last year.

The highest travel volume was in 2005, when more than 1.4 million District-area residents traveled for the holiday.

The vast majority of people traveling more than 50 miles — 90% — were expected to drive to their holiday destination.

The highest number was in 2019 when 1.26 million drove to their holiday feast.

At least gas is cheaper this year.

WTOP’s Neal Augenstein and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Will Vitka

William Vitka is a Digital Writer/Editor for WTOP.com. He's been in the news industry for over a decade. Before joining WTOP, he worked for CBS News, Stuff Magazine, The New York Post and wrote a variety of books—about a dozen of them, with more to come.

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