Nov. 15 is the busiest Thanksgiving travel day: report

Although we're days away from Thanksgiving, believe it or not – travel experts say this year, Nov. 15 is expected to be the busiest travel day.

The holiday travel rush is on at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.

According to, Nov. 15 is expected to be the busiest day, followed by the day before Thanksgiving as the second busiest.

For this couple, they were trying to beat the rush.

"We've got two kids. One that lives in Geneva, Illinois and one that lives in St. Louis, Missouri, so we have to play a little balance game here."

Travel experts believe the reason for the early departure for the Thanksgiving holiday could be because of the pandemic, with more and more people having the opportunity to work remotely, meaning people can head out whenever they want to.

"Compared to how it was a year and a half ago, it was like a ghost town. Now it's back to normal," said another traveler.

Here's a breakdown of the numbers, according to AAA

  • A total of 53.4 million people will be traveling for the holiday.
  • 48.3 million people will be doing so by car
  • 4.2 million people will be traveling by air, up 80% from 2020, but still short of pre-pandemic levels

And travel experts say pack your patience if you're flying. Flights will be full and airports will be busy.

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