By Will Gara
Americans are gearing up for the unofficial kick off of summer this Memorial Day weekend. But will their desire to return to some sort of normalcy be hampered by many of the restrictions still in place? Usually one of the biggest travel weekends of the year, it’s expected to be much lighter than last year when 43 million Americans hit the road according to AAA. In fact the auto club group won’t be issuing a Memorial Day travel forecast due to the accuracy of economic data used to create it has been undermined by COVID-19.
According to AAA Travel senior vice president Paula Twidale, “With social distancing guidelines still in practice, this holiday weekend’s travel volume is likely to set a record low.”
Although many families will continue to stay close to home and will celebrate their holiday weekend locally. Others may feel that it’s time to get away and have an enjoyable family vacation after months of “sheltering in place”.
In fact, just in time for the holiday, the counties that make up the Florida panhandle, a popular destination for metro Atlanta families, lifted the ban on short term rentals. Meaning condos on the beaches of such popular places as Destin and Panama City Beach, Florida are open for business. Something condo owners have been complaining about as hotels had been reopened for some time.
With less people on the roads and the lowest gas prices in years. Many people may feel they can finally take that road trip while still following the guidelines prescribed by the CDC.
How this holiday weekend pans out may be a good indication of what we can expect for the upcoming July 4th weekend.