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An estimated 2.6 million Florida residents will travel at least 50 miles during the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, according to an AAA forecast released Thursday.

They will join the 50.9 million Americans who plan to travel during the holiday, a gain of 1.6 million, or 3.3 percent, for the most Thanksgiving trekkers in 12 years. "Oil prices reached 2-year highs last week, causing the sudden jump at the pump". The majority of traveling Floridians are expected to take to the highways, despite gasoline prices that are expected to be the highest since 2014, AAA said.

The increase comes at a time when gas prices are up more then 40 cent from previous year.

California gas prices have skyrocketed in the last two weeks to their highest levels in more than two years and are likely to remain above $3.20 on average in most areas throughout the holiday weekend. In Palm Beach County, the average price for regular was $2.62, up from $2.30 a year ago. The organization said a strengthening economy and consumer confidence have prompted Americans to be willing to spend more on travel.

In Massachusetts, more than 1.1 million people expect to travel over Thanksgiving, and more than 975,000 of them will go by vehicle, AAA said.

In Florida, 190,720 are expected to take a flight, a 4.5 percent over a year ago, AAA said.

Experts say that is an increase of about 3.2 percent over previous year.

Holiday high: auto rental daily rates will hit a five-year holiday high at $70/day, which may be due to an increase in domestic demand and cost of newer vehicles.

In the Mountain region (Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, and Wyoming), travel volume is expected to top 3.7 million during this period, experts said. "These factors should help fuel consumer spending and generate a strong finish for the travel industry this year".


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