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Highways and air travel expected to dominate Fourth of July weekend travel

AAA says this will be a busy Fourth of July travel period, with most people taking to the road to get to their destinations.
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AAA expects this will be a busy Fourth of July travel period — with most people taking to the road to get to their destinations.

Millions of travelers in the Northeast and New England will take to the highways and the skies for the Fourth of July weekend.

Fran Mayko, a spokeswoman for AAA Northeast, said that nearly 90% of the region’s 2.7 million travelers will take to the highways and interstates this weekend.

“Travelers in general feel more comfortable taking their car,” Mayko said. “It’s still the most convenient, most accessible, the least expensive way to travel, especially if you have kids.”

Mayko also said the recent spike in gas prices will not keep people from the roads because many are ready to venture out after being stuck inside for two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kevin Dillion, executive director of the Connecticut Airport Authority, said Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks is expected to see an increase in passengers.

“We’re certainly prepared,” Dillion said. “Slowly, the airlines will be getting their staffing back. Our concessions are getting to the point where we’re fully staffed again. We’re really not expecting too many problems here. We’re in very good shape for the holiday.”

With a recent spike in flight cancellations and delays, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) sent a letter to 10 major airlines urging them to accommodate passengers over the holiday weekend.

Airlines have blamed the flight disruptions on poor weather and air traffic control issues, but data from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics indicates that roughly 40% of delays in the first four months of 2022 were due to circumstances within the airlines’ control.

An estimated 3.5 million Americans are expected to travel by air over the holiday weekend.

Mike Lyle joined WSHU Public Radio in early 2021 as a News Anchor, and was brought on full time to cover Connecticut news. He is an anchor/reporter at New England Public Media, a journalist with the National Press Club, and a weekend/fill-in news anchor at WTIC News/Talk 1080.