Waze recently published an infographic that provides some insight into when you should and shouldn’t drive during this Thanksgiving weekend. It compiled data from last year’s driving data across its network and used that to make recommendations on the best times to hit the road this season. Waze’s data is good stuff, too, considering it compiles information from millions of drivers around the US and provides traffic information to Google Maps, among other apps.
In any case, it turns out that driving on Thanksgiving isn’t such a bad idea, but driving at other times is.
In fact, Waze said driving today, the day before Thanksgiving, is one of the worst times to travel. Go figure, most folks are probably driving to stay with family or friends for the evening. Last year, traffic increased 20 percent the day before Thanksgiving. Be cautious, too because along with that traffic, Waze noticed a 33-percent increase in accident alerts, a 26-percent increase in hazard alerts.
Waze noticed that the least amount of traffic during the entire weekend occurred during the morning of Thanksgiving, which means you may want to consider driving on Thanksgiving morning instead of tonight. If you can make it happen, try to stick around at your destination until Monday (provided you’re not overstaying your welcome, of course!) Waze found that traffic dips way, way down until about 3 p.m. on Monday. My guess is that things are starting to return back to normal and, if folks are extending their weekends, even regular work traffic might be a bit lighter compared to the Sunday rush home, which is awful.
Don’t drive the Sunday after Thanksgiving, if you can help it
Waze said traffic increased by 240 percent last year on the Sunday following Thanksgiving, likely as kids piled into minivans to head home from a weekend at grandma’s house. And tired parents may be to blame for that traffic; Waze says accidents increased by 100 percent last year on the Sunday after Thanksgiving.
All of this data is going to vary depending on where you are, of course. If you know the roads and live in a generally underpopulated area, then you’re not going to see much change.If you’re hitting 95 driving from Boston to New York City? Well, I think you should expect an increase in traffic.