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December 22, 2012

Expect busy roads this holiday season

No matter how far you plan to roam to join family this holiday season, Clay Ingram with the American Automobile Association (AAA) says expect heavy traffic.

AAA projects 93.3 million Americans will journey 50 miles or more from home from now through the new year, which is up 1.6 percent over the 91.8 million people who traveled last year. Of the 93.3 million, ninety percent of those plan to take the nation's roadways.

The year-end holiday travel period begins today and goes through Tuesday, Jan. 1.

"This year-end holiday season remains the least volatile of all travel holidays as Americans will not let economic conditions or high gas prices dictate if they go home for the holidays or kick off the New Year with a vacation," Ingram said, who serves as the AAA Alabama spokesperson. "Primary economic indicators all show modest improvement from last year, and AAA is projecting an increase in the number of American's stuffing their stockings with airline tickets and hotel reservations.

Currently, the average price of regular unleaded gas in Alabama is $3.10 per gallon, which is the same price as a year ago, and ten cents per gallon less than it was last month. AAA estimates the national average price of gasoline will slowly drop through the end of the year, and average between $3.20-3.40 a gallon by New Year's Day.

Heading into Christmas Tuesday, it doesn't look like it will be white, but it could be stormy. Monday high's are expected to top out around 60 with a 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. The pattern continues Christmas day with a 70 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms with a high in the mid 50's.

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