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Americans Planning Fall Travel with Cautious Optimism

ORLANDO, Fla. (October 15, 2020) – According to a recent AAA Travel survey, American travelers are making vacation plans through the end of the year, but remain cautiously optimistic about those future plans. Sixty-seven percent of U.S. adults planning a vacation before the end of the year report some degree of uncertainty they will actually be able to take their vacation. As a result, some are opting for spur-of-the-moment travel decisions as they take coronavirus implications into account. According to AAA’s survey, one in five who are planning a trip before the end of this year but haven’t booked yet expect to do so within one week of traveling. AAA advises these travelers to take proper precautions to help keep themselves and others safe while away from home.

The vast majority of trips this fall — 80% — will be road trips. In a sign of the rising popularity of auto travel this fall, use of AAA’s popular TripTik road trip planning tool has doubled compared to the spring and early summer. Not surprisingly, when they pack up their cars, more Americans are heading to destinations known for outdoor recreation and socially distanced fun than in previous years.

“As many Americas continue to work from home and attend school virtually, this temporary lifestyle change opens up new and exciting possibilities for fall travel – particularly for those who deferred summer travel plans,” said Paula Twidale, senior vice president, AAA Travel. “For those who choose to travel, the great American road trip continues to be the preferred method of getting out and exploring the United States. AAA advises these travelers to plan ahead and take precautions to be a responsible traveler.”

Lower prices at the gas pump may also be motivating some would-be travelers to hit the road this fall. On average, gas prices nationally are nearly 50 cents cheaper than this time last year, and are the cheapest fall prices since 2016.

Top Road Trip Destinations

This fall, vacationers are showing a preference for the great American road trip and U.S. destinations that allow for socially distanced, outdoor recreation. New additions to the list of top road trip destinations this year include Keystone, South Dakota – home to Mount Rushmore – and Colorado Springs.

4 Ways to Keep Cybercriminals From Hijacking Your Car | Good Works Auto Repair

Gone are the days when we simply used vehicles for transportation. Yes, that’s still their primary purpose but these days, they’re also mini computers on wheels. From Bluetooth capabilities for connecting smartphones, to computerized systems like Lane Keep Assist and Auto Diagnostics, your vehicle is full of technology. This brings up the question: is your vehicle safe from cybercriminals and hackers?

Can hackers access your vehicle?

The simple answer to this questions is yes, hackers can access some of your vehicle’s onboard computers and electronic systems. Is it likely to happen to you? Not so much. There are two main reasons for this:

Low Gas Prices + Simple Car Care = More Savings

With gas prices remaining low, motorists should take advantage of their savings and invest it back into their vehicles. By spending a little now to increase fuel efficiency, drivers can multiply fuel savings and save more money at the pump, says the Car Care Council.

With the average cost of a gallon of gas remaining low at $2.166, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the Car Care Council encourages motorists to be car care aware and perform simple steps to improve fuel efficiency and save money.

Engine Performance: Keep your car properly tuned to improve gas mileage by an average of four percent.

Tire Pressure: Keep tires properly inflated and improve gas mileage by up to three percent.

Motor Oil: Improve gas mileage by one to two percent by using the grade of motor oil recommended by the manufacturer.

Air Filters: Replacing clogged air filters on older vehicles can improve fuel economy and will improve performance and acceleration on all vehicles.

Gas Cap: Replacing damaged, loose or missing gas caps will stop gas from vaporizing into the air.

National Average at Cheapest Start to October Since 2016

At $2.18, the national gas price average is at the cheapest start to the month of October since 2016. That average is the same as a week ago, four cents cheaper than the start of this past September and nearly 50 cents cheaper than last year. The national average held on the week as demand was mostly stable at 8.5 million b/d despite gasoline stocks increasing by 700,000 bbl.

“Demand is likely to see some declines in the weeks ahead as drivers traditionally take fewer road trips in the fall,” said Jeanette Casselano McGee, AAA spokesperson. “That will mean gas prices are likely to push cheaper throughout the month.”

On the week, 41 state gas price averages fluctuated by no more than two cents. Of those, 38 states only saw a penny increase or decrease. A handful of states saw more substantial gas price increases including Florida (+9 cents), Delaware (+6 cents), New Jersey (+6 cents), Washington, D.C. (+5 cents), West Virginia (+4 cents) and Maryland (+3 cents).

Quick Stats

The nation’s top 10 largest weekly changes: Florida (+9 cents), Delaware (+6 cents), New Jersey (+6 cents), Washington, D.C. (+5 cents), Michigan (-5 cents), West Virginia (+4 cents), Maryland (+3 cents), Kentucky (-3 cents), Idaho (-3 cents) and Indiana (-3 cents).

The nation’s top 10 least expensive markets: Mississippi ($1.84), Texas ($1.85), Arkansas ($1.87), Oklahoma ($1.87), Missouri ($1.87), Louisiana ($1.88), Alabama ($1.89), South Carolina ($1.91), Tennessee ($1.93) and Kansas ($1.95).

Arizona 2020 Road Trips | Where To Travel Phoenix AZ

It’s officially fall in Arizona. For those seeking to make the most of autumn, Arizona offers a number of scenic hikes, drives and sites for taking in the beautiful colors of fall foliage.

Enjoy the best of what Arizona has to offer during the fall season by taking a trip to one of these uniquely Arizona locations:


Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park
Located in the Tonto National Forest near the rustic town of Superior, Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park is Arizona’s oldest and largest botanical garden. During the fall season, enjoy live music and cider at the park while admiring the changing colors of its pistachio, hackberry, black walnut and sycamore trees. (INFO)

Cave Creek Canyon
Found on the eastern side of the Chiricahua Mountains, Cave Creek Canyon has earned the nickname, “Yosemite of Arizona.” To catch the canyon’s multitude of maple, sycamore and oak trees in peak fall colors, hike along the easygoing South Fork Trail from late October to early November. (INFO)

Lockett Meadow
Lockett Meadow offers remarkable views of the Inner Basin and the San Francisco Peaks, especially when its aspen trees turn a golden hue. If visiting Lockett Meadow, take the Inner Basin Trail to view an ancient volcanic caldera and be sure to plan a trip before the campground closes in mid-October. (INFO)

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Bumper to Bumper Radio answers a listener's question regarding their cold air intake.