AAA Carolinas said lower gas prices this year helped boost the number of Carolinians expected to travel during Memorial Day weekend.
The travel agency said an estimated 437,000 motorists in South Carolina will travel during the holiday - an increase of 3.3 percent from last year. In North Carolina, 884,000 drivers will take to the highways, marking an increase of 2.2 percent from last year.
According to AAA, South Carolina had the nation's cheapest gas Monday at $3.34 per gallon, with the lowest price in the state being found in Greenville at $3.29 per gallon. Monday's price was 28 cents lower than last year, the agency said.
In North Carolina, gas prices were nearly a quarter higher than South Carolina, but still lower than last year, AAA reported. The average cost for a gallon of gas was at $3.55 - 22 cents lower than last year.
"Sharply declining gasoline prices, a slight improvement in the economy and a desire to spend the holiday with family and friends means more vehicles on the road this year," said AAA Carolinas CEO and President David E. Parsons. "We might see a slight stabilization in gas prices, or even a mild increase over the weekend, but prices should continue to drop well into June, unless some unforeseen event occurs."
AAA said that the number of those flying during the holiday weekend was down 5.5 percent from last year in South Carolina and down 5.7 percent from last year in North Carolina.
Hotel bookings are up 11 percent from last year, according to AAA.
Copyright 2012 FOX Carolina (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
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