AAA Predicts Fewer Californians Will Travel During Labor Day Weekend

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Traffic is seen backed up on westbound Interstate 80 in Emeryville. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

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SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – The American Automobile Association’s survey of Labor Day travel plans forecasts 3.7 million Californians will travel 50 or more miles from home for the holiday weekend, a decrease of 2.6 percent from last year.

The survey released this week predicts air travel will be down 1.5 percent, in part because ticket prices are 13 percent higher than last year. For those who are traveling, the car seems to be the way to get away.

“I might go camping, or I may stick around and go to the horse races,” said Tom Giller, whose only definite plan was to stick close to home.

KCBS’ Margie Shafer Reports:

Keith Howard said his daughters and a son-in-law planned to drive down from Napa so they could spend the weekend in San Francisco.

“We don’t do barbecue too much, but both my daughters, they do salads,” he laughed. “It’s Northern California, right?”

Although fewer people reported planning to travel, Howard’s family can still expect lots of cars on the roads. Rail and bus systems expect to tally a significant decrease of 33 percent.

As the name suggests, Labor Day has its origins in the labor movement and its push for an 8-hour day.

Phone operator Suzanne Keibler said she would be quite happy marking the holiday to the tune of time and a half.

“That’s my scheduled day. I work Thursday through Monday,” she said.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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