Holiday Weekend Drives Road Trip Plans Despite Record Gas Prices

Holiday Weekend Drives Road Trip Plans Despite Record Gas Prices

Memorial Day weekend travel is expected to be almost in line with pre-pandemic levels. AAA predicts 39.2 million people will travel at least 50 miles from home, with the overwhelming majority (34.9 million) traveling by car. The auto club says holiday weekend travel will be up 8.3% compared to last year.

Arizona drivers are paying 30 cents per gallon more than the national average, according to AAA. Average prices reported Wednesday, May 25, are $4.599 nationally and $4.917 statewide.

Transportation analyst INRIX predicts the longest travel delays will be before Memorial Day on the afternoons of Thursday, May 26, and Friday, May 27.

Daily Worst and Best Times to Travel


Worst Time

Best Time



Before 6:00am or After 9:00pm



Before 7:00am or After 9:00pm



Before 10:00am



Before 10:00am



Before 11:00am

Source: INRIX


Your Neighborhood Auto Repair Professionals (NARPRO) are available to discuss critical safety checks before hitting the road and effective ways to maximize gas mileage. Including:

  1. Slow down: According to the U.S. Department of Energy, each 5 miles per hour you drive over 50 mph is like paying an extra 20 cents per gallon.


  1. Avoid sudden starts and stops: If you see a red light, ease up and coast rather than wait to brake. When the light turns green, gently accelerate. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates aggressive driving (speeding, rapid acceleration and braking) can lower your gas mileage by roughly 15 to 30 percent at highway speeds and 10 to 40 percent in stop-and-go traffic.


  1. Lighten the load: Hauling cargo on your roof increases wind resistance and lowers fuel economy. You may also want to get the junk out of your trunk.


  1. Avoid excessive idling: Turn off your engine when you’re parked. Idling can use a quarter to a half-gallon of fuel per hour, depending on your engine size and air conditioner use.


  1. Use cruise control: this helps you maintain a steady speed on highways.


  1. Check your tires: Properly inflated tires can improve fuel economy up to 3 percent, plus they’re safer and last longer. Follow the levels recommended by the automaker.


  1. Keep up to date on maintenance. A dirty air filter restricts the flow of air in the engine, which lowers performance.


Must carry items in case of breakdown:

· Charged cell phone

· First-aid kit

· Fire extinguisher

· Reflective warning triangles

· Foam tire sealant

· Jumper cables

· Flashlight and batteries

· Duct tape

· Gloves and rags

· Water and snacks

· Sunshade and umbrella


NARPRO (Neighborhood Auto Repair Professionals)

The Neighborhood Auto Repair Professionals (NARPRO) helps car owners find skilled and honest car repair shops. NARPRO only recommends independent, family-owned, full-service auto repair shops that have passed 26 rigorous tests. Visit to find recommended shops near work or home. NARPRO is the easiest way to find an honest mechanic in the Valley.

Photo by Tobi:

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