Drivers hit the highways for holiday weekend

July 1, 2011 4:17:09 AM PDT
Millions of people are expected to hit the road for the July Fourth holiday weekend. So what better time for gas prices to drop?

The price for a regular gallon of gas along the New Jersey Turnpike dropped from $3.64 to $3.59 Friday.

AAA says 39 million Americans are expected to travel 50 miles or more from home this holiday weekend, and many have already hit the road across the Tri-State area.

The New Jersey Turnpike Authority predicts 1-.5 million vehicles will travel the Garden State Parkway Friday. The Port Authority, which projects 2.6 million vehicles will cross its bridges and tunnels, says it will fully staff the toll booths to help speed things along.

Most of the cars on the parkway are headed to the shore. A shuttle will link train stations with beaches and shopping areas in Asbury Park, Ocean Grove, Bradley Beach and Belmar.

But for those with their sights set on other holiday weekend destinations, it may not be too late to plan that trip. Some airlines are offering last-minute deals.

"I always advise people, if you look at an airfare on a particular route and you think it's really way out of your budget, come back a day later, a couple days later, an hour later and look again, you may be surprised, because fares yo-yo all the time," said George Hobica, of

While the bargains are out there, the holiday getaway is costing more this year. A AAA and IHS Global insight survey reports the average traveler will spend $807 this weekend. That's an an increase of more than 25 percent over last year.