Plan ahead! Summer travel expected to ramp up for Memorial Day

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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — The traditional start to the summer tourism season is later this month. and there’s no shortage of people looking to get away.

We spoke with some of those soon-to-be travelers. After a year with COVID restrictions, they’re ready to get out of town.

Memorial Day Weekend is the official kickoff for summer, so prepare to have other travelers on the road if you’re headed out of town. Locals say they’re ready.

“We’re going to have a party because it’s a birthday and anniversary, so I’m looking forward to it!” said Kim Viggiano.

While some people may be hesitant to leave home, others are planning trips after quarantining for the last year. Kim Viggiano is headed to Washington D.C. to visit her son for the first time since the pandemic started.

“[We have] no concerns. Like I said, we’re all vaccinated and I actually traveled before I was vaccinated. Of course with a mask, but there was no concern, I felt safe,” said Viggiano.

Travel agents warn to plan ahead, especially if you are wanting to visit places like Disney World or International resorts. Charlie Sturm with Lindstrom Travel says limited occupancy for top travel destinations is making his job more challenging, but could actually make for a better vacation for you.

“It’s making it harder because things are booking up faster, but, those people who are traveling, Mexico and the Caribbean, if you’re going that far, there on occupancy level rates of 50-60% that they’re capped at that by the government. It acutually makes for a very nice vacation when you’re down there because there are fewer people at the resort you’re not fighting for a chair,” said Sturm.

Sturm suggests avoiding renting a car because that could end up being the most expensive part of your entire trip, whether it’s flying or driving.

Ephram Brown says he’ll do whatever it takes to see his nephew’s graduation in Atlanta.

“I will. Because, you know, love doesn’t have a price on it. It should because it’s expensive, but, I’ll do it. We’re going to get there,” said Brown.

Sturm encourages travelers looking to fly to book their tickets now before prices surge as Memorial Day weekend nears.

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