Independence Day Travel Tips

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Vehicles, cyclists, scooters and pedestrians will all be on the move this weekend.

DelDOT urges drivers and everyone to proceed with caution and to expect congestion.
To date, there have been 75 crash-related fatalities in Delaware this year, a 40% increase over the same time of last year.

“No matter how you plan to get around this weekend, doing so safely should be everyone’s top priority,” Delaware Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski said. “We want everyone to reach their destination safely as the summer travel season begins and more people are on the roads.”

For residents and guests to eastern Sussex County, DART’s Beach Bus routes will have additional buses running this weekend before and after the fireworks display in Rehoboth and is just $2 to ride one way and parking is free at park & ride locations in Rehoboth and Lewes. DART’s entire 4th of July schedule can be viewed here. DelDOT said.

If you plan to utilize the Bay Bridge, the heaviest travel times are expected to last until ten tonight, then resume after 7 a.m. tomorrow and last much of the day. Motorists are asked to stay on Route 50 to keep local roadways open for first responders and residents.

Summer travel shifts into high gear with the Independence Day weekend approaching.
According to Triple-A Mid-Atlantic, more than 116-thousand Delawareans are expected to travel 50 miles or more away from home. That is up 3% from last year. The great majority will be driving to their destinations.

“The volume of travelers we expect to see over Independence Day is a definite sign that summer travel is kicking into high gear,” AAA Mid-Atlantic Spokesperson Jana Tidwell said. “The roads will be as crowded as they have ever been over the Independence Day holiday, but airports, train stations and bus depots will also be extremely busy so travelers should plan accordingly.”

Additional travel tips from AAA:

Driving:

  • Make sure your vehicle is road-ready: For the more than 101,000 Delawareans planning to hit the road, planning ahead should include making sure your vehicle road-trip ready. AAA recommends a full vehicle inspection. Make an appointment today for a free bumper to bumper check up at a AAA Car Care, Insurance and Travel center or find a trusted mechanic at any AAA Approved Auto Repair. If you prefer DIY, make sure to check your battery, fuel system, tires, brakes and fluid levels before hitting the road.
  • Make sure your AAA membership is up to date: The Independence Day weekend will be no holiday for AAA. Our Emergency Roadside Service crews are gearing up for an extremely busy weekend. AAA expects to respond to more than 1,000 calls for help between Thursday and Monday – just in Delaware alone.
  • Pack a summer emergency kit: Should you experience a breakdown, it is important to have everything on hand to keep you and your passengers safe and comfortable while waiting for help to arrive. The emergency kit should include a fully charged cellphone, additional cellphone charger, jumper cables, first aid kit, flare or flashlight with extra batteries so you can see and be seen, a few extra blankets, water, snacks and extra medicines.
  • Travel at off-peak: For those hitting the road, Thursday and Friday are anticipated to be peak traffic days.
Daily Worst and Best Times to Travel
DayWorst TimeBest Time
Thursday2:00-8:00 PMBefore 7:00 AM / After 8:00 PM
Friday12:00-9:00 PMBefore 10:00 AM / After 9:00 PM
Saturday2:00-4:00 PMBefore 12:00 PM / After 7:00 PM
SundayLow congestion expected all day
MondayLow congestion expected all day
Source: INRIX

Flying

  • Check your flight status before leaving for the airport: Don’t make a wasted trip. Download the airline app and check your flight status before setting out.
  • Get there early: Airports will be crowded. Arrive at the airport at least two hours early for domestic flights and three hours for international.
  • Understand expectations: Review TSA guidelines for getting through security and pack accordingly. Also, remember that masks are still required in some airports and on some flights to international destinations. AAA encourages all travelers to abide by CDC guidelines.

To learn more about which airports have the longest wait times for security visit TheExtraMile.com.

All modes of transportation:

  • Consider Travel Insurance: Hope for the best but plan for the worst. Talk to a trust travel advisor about the travel insurance policy that would cover you if your weekend getaway does not go as planned.
  • Book everything in advance: Flights, car rentals, accommodations, tours, cruises and other activities are in high demand and availability will be limited. Prices are already skewing higher and with greater demand, finding last-minute deals is unlikely.
  • Be Flexible and Patient: Whether you are driving, flying or going by some other mode of transportation, expect crowds, expect delays and plan accordingly. Staffing in airports at hotels and in restaurants continues to be a challenge. Pack your patience.

Big Cities and Beaches are Top Destinations

AAA booking data reveals that big cities and beaches are top destinations this Independence Day, both domestically and abroad:

2022 Top Independence Day Destinations
U.S DestinationsInternational Destinations
Orlando, FLVancouver, BC, Canada
Seattle, WAParis, France
New York, NYLondon, England
Anaheim, CARome, Italy
Anchorage, AKAmsterdam, Netherlands
Ft. Lauderdale, FLDublin, Ireland
Las Vegas, NVCalgary, AB, Canada
Honolulu, HIPunta Cana, Dominican Republic
Denver, COCancun, Mexico
Chicago, ILNassau, Bahamas

Forecast Methodology:

In cooperation with AAA, IHS Markit– a world leader in critical information, analytics and expertise — developed a unique methodology to forecast actual domestic travel volumes. The economic variables used to forecast travel for the current holiday are leveraged from IHS Markit’s proprietary databases. These data include macroeconomic drivers such as employment; output; household net worth; asset prices including stock indices; interest rates; housing market indicators and variables related to travel and tourism, including prices of gasoline, airline travel and hotel stays. AAA and IHS Markit have quantified holiday travel volumes going back to 2000.

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