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AAA estimates that 938,000 people in the D.C. area will travel by car over the holiday weekend. That's the highest number since 2005. Whether you're traveling by car or by plane, we have some tips to make sure you're making the most out of your long weekend vacation.
1. Take advantage of travel discounts.
Using travel discounts like Shop Your Way and Uber can help ease the hassle this weekend. Link your Uber app to your Shop Your Way app to earn $2 cashback in points every time you ride. Click HERE and use the code iHeart.
2. Time your trip appropriately.
Don’t hit the roads at peak times, when everyone is expected to be traveling this weekend. Below are the worst times to travel in the DC area according to NBC Washington:
The worst time to be on the roads in the D.C. area will be Thursday from 4:30 to 7 p.m. Late afternoon Friday also will be bad as commuters again mix with holiday travelers.
The worst time on the Outer Loop of the Beltway is about 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, AAA says. On the Inner Loop, the worst time is 4:45 p.m. Tuesday. On I-95 North, avoid driving at 6 p.m. Monday. On I-95 South, avoid driving at 5 p.m. Thursday.
And if you’re flying, check out FlightStats.com to find out the off-peak time to schedule your flight.
3. Allow for more time than you think you’ll need.
Even if you’re traveling at a less-trafficked time, it doesn’t hurt to get a head start on your trip. Try hitting the roads early in the day or giving yourself an extra hour at the airport. It's better to arrive early with time to kill than to arrive late and miss your vacation altogether.
4. Know the weather forecast
Before jumping in the car, know the expected weather in the locations you are traveling this holiday weekend so you can be better prepared for the best and safest routes.
According to WJLA, each day of the holiday weekend has a threat for possible thunderstorms or showers.
5. Bring snacks and water.
No matter how you’re traveling, food and beverages you brought from home are likely to be far cheaper than dining on-the-go. Bringing an empty water bottle through airport security means you can fill up on the other side and avoid $5 bottled water in the airport. And grabbing those snacks from home can help you from making those frequent stops on the road for overpriced chips.