SCOTT TOWNSHIP, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) — The unofficial kickoff to summer is just one week away. Many are making traveling plans for the Memorial Day weekend.
AAA says gas prices are stabilizing ahead of Memorial Day weekend, but could increase with demand.
Edward McConnell and his wife are driving more conservatively as Pennsylvania’s average gallon of gas reaches $3.16.
“We drive a little slower. We drive about 55 (MPH), and it stretches it out, and try to go when there is not too much traffic,” said Edward McConnell, Carbondale resident.
Gas prices are up compared to this time last year.
“Now that Memorial Day is here demand could go up. Anytime demand goes up you could see higher gas prices,” said Kathleen Zinszer, senior public affairs specialist at AAA Mid-Atlantic.
Zinszer says 37 million people are expected to hit the road or by air come this weekend— up 61% from last year.
“We’re getting close to pre-pandemic travel. But, we’re about you know 10 or 15 percent less than we were in 2019.”
While many people may be traveling, different stops are on the itinerary. State parks are becoming very popular this memorial day weekend.
Lackawanna State Park has become more popular over the past year.
“We hike here… All around the lake, back there, on that side. We’ve hiked every trail, almost, up here and we walk here three, four miles a day,” said Dave Botscheller, Dalton resident.
The park manager says attendance is up 40 to 50% since 2019.
Ongoing COVID restrictions will keep the pool at 75% capacity and swimmers must wear masks.
Camp sites and rentals are nearly booked for this weekend. Officials expect this year to be like last.
“Last year we were 100 percent booked most weekends. Which was certainly uncharacteristic,” said Robert Barrese, park manager at Lackawanna State Park.
AAA recommends travelers understand COVID restrictions and guidelines when and where traveling. As things may change in one state, but not in another.