Dip in Thanksgiving Travel as Pandemic Surges

AAA estimated before the holiday weekend that five million fewer people would travel for the holiday than last year

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You won’t find the usual packed highways this Thanksgiving weekend.

As travel orders from the CDC and state governments advised people to stay home, the pandemic put the breaks on heavy traffic.

AAA estimated before the holiday weekend that 50 million people would travel for Thanksgiving ⁠— a mark that’s five million less than last year’s estimate.

“There weren’t as many people on the roads,” said Diane Sutty, who traveled to New York for the holiday this year.

Will Weddleton, a Quincy resident, stayed home and made sure his family got tested for COVID-19 ahead of gathering.

“We’re being very careful about social isolation,” Weddleton said.

He did head out to Western Massachusetts on Sunday to visit his daughter, but picked up takeout and had an outdoor meal rather than cooking and eating inside.

Those who did travel appreciated the clear lanes.

“I was kind of pleasantly surprised, so it was no big backup in Sturbridge and all in all it went pretty well,” Sutty said.

Some who stayed home fear that enjoying a Thanksgiving all gathered together may come at a high cost.

“I’m just expecting that we’ll see the numbers of cases go up in the next few weeks,” Kim Neimi said.

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