AAA expects a summer travel surge among DC-area residents

FILE - In this March 31, 2021 file photo, traffic moves along the Interstate 76 highway in Philadelphia. If you're traveling over the Memorial Day weekend, expect lots of company. The AAA auto club said Tuesday, May 11, that more than 37 million Americans plan to travel at least 50 miles from home over the holiday weekend. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)(AP/Matt Rourke)
As coronavirus restrictions get lifted, AAA said many in the D.C. area are planning to hit the road this summer.

More than 70% of D.C. residents and more than 60% of Maryland and Virginia residents say they’re planning to take a trip this summer, according to a AAA survey.

“This is the year when people really want to travel,” said John Townsend, manager of public and government affairs at AAA Mid-Atlantic.

He said the survey showed about a quarter of D.C. residents, and about 20% of Virginia and Maryland residents, are planning longer, more extravagant trips — AAA is calling them “revenge trips.”

“They’re trying to make up for or compensate for the time they lost last year,” Townsend said.

The survey also found that 36% of D.C. residents, 31% of Virginians and 29% of Marylanders are traveling this summer because of a need for a “quick getaway.”

AAA is projecting about 2.8 million people in the D.C. area will travel more than 50 miles this Memorial Day, which is about a 60% increase from last year. They also expect nine out of 10 of these travelers to travel by car.

“They are suffering from cabin fever and wish to break that spell,” Townsend said.

Nationally, more than 37 million Americans expect to get away for the holiday weekend.

When it comes to the coronavirus, AAA found that travelers are still concerned about travel safety. Of D.C. residents, 43% said they still have COVID-19 related travel concerns, as do 38% of Marylanders and 31% of Virginians.

More Coronavirus News

Looking for more information? D.C., Maryland and Virginia are each releasing more data every day. Visit their official sites here: Virginia | Maryland | D.C.

Valerie Bonk

Valerie Bonk started working at WTOP in 2016 and has lived in Howard County, Maryland, her entire life. She's thrilled to be a reporter for WTOP telling stories on air. She works as both a television and radio reporter in the Maryland and D.C. areas. 

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