Mad dash made to stores, on roads as holidays approach - FOX Carolina 21

Mad dash made to stores, on roads as holidays approach

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GREENVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) -

With the final countdown to Christmas and New Year's, many across the Carolinas are making a mad dash to buy their gifts and hit the roads this holiday season.

Many Upstate stores have extended hours to help shoppers make their last-minute purchases in time to have the gifts wrapped and ready to put under the tree Tuesday.

Some stores have extended their hours so long that they aren't even closing, like Toys "R" Us, whose stores are staying open a continuous 88 hours from 6 a.m. on Friday until 10 p.m. Christmas Eve.

If you already have your shopping done but are wondering how the weather may affect your holiday travel plans, those taking to the skies may want to check their flights early as snowstorms have hit parts of the nation hard.

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While most of the Carolinas won't see much if any snow, high winds will continue through Saturday, with most of the Upstate, northeast Georgia and western North Carolina under a wind advisory until noon Saturday.

Christmas day forecasts look slightly soggy for some, with the highest chances of rain waiting till Wednesday, according to FOX Carolina Meteorologist Alex Wilson. Wilson's 7-day forecast shows temperatures will rise to the low-to-mid-50s across the western Carolinas on Tuesday with a 30 percent chance of rain.

AAA of the Carolinas also warns drivers to be alert and cautious on the roads as the busiest travel holiday of the year is also the deadliest. According to AAA in 2010 and 2011, 68 people died on South Carolina roads during the year-end holiday travel time, averaging to 6.2 fatalities per day – nearly three times higher than the daily average during the rest of the year.

AAA predicts a 2 percent increase in holiday travel this year, with less expensive gas prices and airfare. Travelers looking for updated gas price and flight information can visit FOX Carolina's Holiday Travel Helper section here.

But for most, the Christmas and New Year's holidays are a time for memory making and family moments. From cooking to caroling, there are always special memories made with loved ones, family and friends to end the year on a high note.

To share some of your holiday moments with FOX Carolina, send them to iwitness@foxcarolina.com.

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