AAA projects that Christmas/New Year`s holiday travel will be down 6% from last year, with 53.7 million people traveling 50 miles or more from home.
At least 11.5 million are expected to travel by plane, train or bus, down 20%, and 42.2 million will travel by motor vehicle, down only 1%.
“The current recession and the nation`s unemployment situation are the major contributors,” said Sandra Hughes, AAA Travel vice president.
Of those who will be traveling during the holidays, AAA said 79% will go by car, up from 75% last year.
About two-thirds of holiday travelers plan to stay with a friends or relatives, and 23% will stay in hotels or motels.
The Christmas/New Year`s projections are based on holiday travel telephone survey of 1,300 adults conducted for AAA by the Travel Industry Association of America.