In news we monitor as part of our resort consultant group, AAA is predicting more travelers will drive rather than fly over Thanksgiving. This number is up over last year and the main reason appears to be higher airfares coupled with a struggling economy. According to the report by Travel tracker AAA: “4 percent more Americans than last year will journey at least 50 miles from home, with about 90 percent of them driving. Another 8 percent plan to fly, but AAA notes that higher airfares and less available seats have forced many would-be fliers to drive instead.” “The remaining travelers plan to take buses, trains or other forms of transport.” “This is the third consecutive Thanksgiving that Americans have taken to the road in higher numbers than in the past year.” Owners and their resort consultant can read the full analysis here. Based on this prediction and given that air travel typically rises over the December holidays, we also expect the number of travelers going to resort destinations will use a car instead of flying in that month as well. Given that information, owners, operators and hospitality asset management should be looking at more regional type visitors within a 300 mile radius and target their marketing accordingly. If your California resort is in Calistoga, Carmel or Monterey, Sacramento and its surrounding area presents a market opportunity to attract more business from that region. Auto travel is also expected to be heavy over Thanksgiving if your hotel business plan includes resorts in Southern California according to this Los Angeles Times article. However from a resort consultant perspective, many of the folks in Los Angeles will not hesitate to drive 500 miles to San Francisco and its nearby resort areas. So you should not ignore targeting that market with advertising and promotional deals either.