Busy Memorial Day weekend travel kicks off summer season

The Memorial Day holiday travel period continues Monday in what is expected to be one of the busiest crunches since the start of the pandemic. 

Los Angeles International Airport estimates 1.2 million passengers could pass through the airport for the busy travel period that began last Wednesday, while the Automobile Club of Southern California predicted around 3.3 million SoCal reisdents will be traveling over the holiday weekend.

That figure is 7.7% higher than last year, and roughly a one-half percentage point increase from 2019 before the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

According to the Auto Club, 2.8 million Southern Californians are expected to travel via car to their destination, while 358,000 will fly and 230,000 will travel by other means, such as bus, train or cruise ship.

Nationally, the Auto Club predicted that 42.3 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more away from home over the holiday weekend, up 7% from last year but 1% below the number from 2019.

For Southern Californians, the top destinations for travelers are expected to be Las Vegas, San Diego, Santa Barbara, the Grand Canyon and Palm Springs.

City News Service contributed to this report.