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Experts estimate 35% increase in year-end travel in U.S.

Experts with AAA estimate more than 100 million Americans will be traveling at least 50 miles away from home from Dec. 23 to Jan. 2. In Florida, this would mean a 35% increase from last year.

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Deana Martin is among the increasing number of Americans who feel comfortable traveling this December despite the risks of the pandemic.

Martin said she was flying back from Fort Lauderdale to Atlanta, Georgia on Tuesday after enjoying time on a cruise ship in the Caribbean.

“You have to wear a mask almost everywhere you go and I have been fully vaccinated,” Martin said.

Experts with AAA estimate more than 100 million Americans will be traveling at least 50 miles away from home from Dec. 23 to Jan. 2. In Florida, this would mean a 35% increase from last year.

Options to reduce hospitalization and death over COVID-19 continue to increase with Pfizer’s yet to be approved five-day treatment of 30 pills. The company claims that when taken within three days of diagnosis it can reduce the risk of severe disease by 89%.

“This is a game-changer,” said Dr. Dushyantha T. Jayaweera, a University of Miami professor, adding prevention measures such as vaccination, face masks, and social distancing continue to be the best defense.

About 800,000 people, including more than 62,000 in Florida, have died of COVID-19 in the United States since the coronavirus pandemic began and more than half of them died this year.

The delta variant continues to make up for almost all of the cases in the U.S., as researchers focus on understanding the omicron variant.


About the Author:

In January 2017, Hatzel Vela became the first local television journalist in the country to move to Cuba and cover the island from the inside. During his time living and working in Cuba, he covered some of the most significant stories in a post-Fidel Castro Cuba.