Fourth Forecast: Higher Travel, Lower Fuel Prices

AAA says Independence Day weekend could be Michigan’s busiest in 15 years.

If you’re heading out of town to celebrate America’s 241st birthday, you’ll have lots of company.

AAA says it expects almost 1.5 million people in Michigan to travel at least 50 miles from home between June 30 and July 4. That would make this the state’s busiest Independence Day weekend since 2002. The auto club says most will drive, and they can expect to pay less for fuel than they did in 2016. AAA’s daily gas price survey lists the average price statewide at $2.308 per gallon. It was $2.399 at this time last year. Spokeswoman Susan Hiltz says there’s a glut of fuel on the market.

“There’s more U.S. production, so there’s more gas available,” Hiltz says. “It’s supply and demand, and right now we’ve got a little bit more supply.”

With so many people on the road, someone’s bound to have car trouble, and will call for roadside assistance. Hiltz says drivers can avoid flat tires, dead batteries, and lockouts by being prepared.

“We just want to remind folks to get your car in for a little tune-up and a little check-up before you hit the road so you’re not on the side of the road waiting,” Hiltz says.

For those who are flying to their destination, Hiltz says they can expect cheaper travel expenses than last year.

“We’re seeing lower prices for car rentals, and for air fares,” Hiltz says.

Click here for AAA’s latest fuel price survey.

Click the audio player to hear Susan Hiltz’s conversation with WDET’s Pat Batcheller.


  • Pat Batcheller
    Pat Batcheller is a host and Senior News Editor for 101.9 WDET, presenting local news, traffic and weather updates during Morning Edition. He is an amateur musician.