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AAA: Memorial Holiday Travel Down

Aired 5/23/13 on KPBS News.

Fewer Californians intend to travel this Memorial Day Weekend, according to a new survey.

The number of Californians planning to travel over the Memorial Day weekend is down two percent from last year.

"This is the first time since the end of 2009 that we are starting to see a little dip in travel," said Cynthia Harris with AAA.

The auto club's latest survey finds about four million Californians expect to travel 50 miles or more during the three-day weekend, which marks the start of the summer travel season.

"This gives the hotel industry, the tourism industry, a view of what they can expect for the rest of the year," Harris explained. "Now we are showing a decrease so this could mean that for 4th of July we will show a decrease as well, but not necessarily."

Harris attributes the drop in travel plans to lingering uncertainty about the economic recovery.

AAA said the number of people driving, 3.5 illion, is unchanged from last year. But air travel will decrease by 12.5 percent because of higher airfares.

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