Thanksgiving Travel 2022: ‘Plan Ahead and Pack Your Patience’ (Plus Best and Worst Times to Hit The Road)

November 16, 2022 | Article by Chain | Cohn | Clark staff | Tips & Information

Thanksgiving Travel 2022: ‘Plan Ahead and Pack Your Patience’ (Plus Best and Worst Times to Hit The Road)

The holidays are fast approaching, which means it’s time to plan properly for holiday travel in the name of safety, and sanity.

AAA predicts that 54.6 million people will travel 50 miles or more from home this Thanksgiving — a 1.5% increase over 2021 and 98% of pre-pandemic volumes. And that’s despite the highest gas prices the United States has seen ever.

Of the 54.6 million, nearly 49 million people are expected to travel by car. This year is projected to be the third busiest for Thanksgiving travel since 2000, according to AAA.

“To avoid stressful situations and in the interest of everyone’s safety, we encourage everyone to plan ahead and pack your patience,” said Matt Clark, senior partner and attorney at Chain | Cohn | Clark.

For those flying, air travel is up nearly 8% over 2021, which means full airport parking and long TSA lines. Another 1.4 million travelers are going out of town for Thanksgiving by bus, train, or cruise ship, an increase of 23% from 2021.

To avoid the most hectic times around Thanksgiving Thursday, experts recommend traveling early in the morning on Wednesday or before 11am on Thanksgiving Day, and avoiding travel between 4pm-8pm Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Here are the best times to travel on each day around Thanksgiving, according to AAA.

  • Nov. 23: Before 8am and after 8pm
  • Nov. 24: Before 11am and after 6pm
  • Nov. 25: Before 11am and after 8pm
  • Nov. 26: Before 2pm and after 8pm
  • Nov. 27: Before 11am and after 8pm

And here are the worst times to travel on each day around Thanksgiving, according to AAA.

  • Nov. 23: 11am to 8pm
  • Nov. 24: 11am to 3pm
  • Nov. 25: 4pm to 8pm
  • Nov. 26: 4pm to 8pm
  • Nov. 27: 4pm to 8pm

Lastly, here are some safety tips so you and your loved ones can arrive safe to your destination.



  • If driving, get your vehicle’s battery, fuel system, tires, brakes and fluid levels checked to prevent breakdowns. Make sure you have properly functioning wiper blades. Keep an emergency kit in your vehicle with a safety cone, carjack, flashlight, and jumper cables. Include first aid essentials and extras like a blanket to stay warm if you break down in the cold.
  • Get plenty of rest and go at your own pace. The holidays can be exhausting, and your wellbeing is most important.
  • Plan the drive ahead of time, and know alternate routes. Proper planning ensures that you’re prepared for whatever might happen during your trip. If you want to avoid traffic, time your travel to put you on busy roads before or after peak traffic times.
  • Give someone close to you a copy of your trip itinerary and photocopies of important documents. This way it will be easy to reach you in case of an emergency.



  • Drivers should avoid distractions, including cell phones. Keep your focus on the road and be aware of the other vehicles and drivers around you.
  • But carry a cell phone and charger in case you need to call for help, get a tow, or arrange alternative transportation.
  • Follow the rules of the road and use caution in work zones.
  • Buckle up, slow down and don’t drive impaired.
  • Make frequent stops to rest or just stretch your legs. During long trips, rotate drivers. If you are too tired to drive, stop and get some rest.  Stopping for even a few minutes every couple hours can do wonders for keeping your energy high.
  • If you have car trouble, pull off the road as far as possible.
  • If you find yourself driving in bad weather and visibility is an issue, pay attention to road markings to keep yourself oriented to the roadway. If you have no visibility, pull over.
  • Stay hydrated. Not having enough water during a long drive could mean fatigue or decreased alertness, which is dangerous on the road.


If you or someone you know is injured in an accident at the fault of someone else, contact the accident attorneys at Chain | Cohn | Clark by calling (661) 323-4000, or fill out a free consultation form, text, or chat with us at