Holiday Travel: Over 38 million Travelers; Lost Bags & Overbooked Flights High

AAA estimates that 38.3 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more from home this holiday, a 2.7% increase from 2005. Travel by car is forecast to be up 2.6%, while air travel is forecast to be up 3.2%, CNNMoney.com reports.

The ATA estimates that about 2.5 million passengers will fly this Sunday and Monday, filling about 90 percent to 91 percent of seats. Wednesday is expected to see just a little more than 2 million passengers and 82 percent of seats filled. The airlines have been filling a record 80.5 percentage of seats during the first nine months of the year.

Prices are Up:

  • AAA estimates an average price of $2.235 a gallon for unleaded regular, up 0.6% from a year earlier.
  • The government estimates that hotel prices in October were 4.4% higher than a year earlier, and rental car and truck rates are up 5.1%, both well ahead of the overall rate of inflation.
  • ATA estimates that the amount paid to fly a mile is up about 10% on domestic flights for the first 10 months of this year, with a 6 percent to 7 percent increase on international routes.
  • Sabre Airline Solutions estimates that Thanksgiving weekend fares will be up 25% over a year ago.

Lost Bags & Overbooked Flights: 

  • 11% increase in the number of missing bag reports over the first nine months of the year, compared to a year earlier. That works out to about 1,114 additional missing-bag reports a day filed by passengers through September.
  • 24% increase in passengers who are involuntarily bumped off a flight because of overbooking. 

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