AAA Suggests Four Ways to Send off Summer

Experts offer travel inspiration for last summer holiday

Phoenix, Aug. 27, 2013. More than 678,000 Arizonans are projected to travel this Labor Day weekend. For those seeking inspiration for how to spend the weekend, AAA’s travel experts have some great options.

“Labor Day travel is typically shorter because most kids are already back in school,” said Amy Moreno, senior travel manager for AAA Arizona. “Travelers are looking for one last hurrah with the whole family to say goodbye to summer.”

AAA Travel experts’ four favorite ways to bid summer farewell include:

  • Parkin’ it. There are more than 20 national parks, monuments and memorials just five hours or less from Phoenix. For a longer adventure, Zion, Arches, Bryce Canyon and Canyonlands National Parks are between 7.5 and 10 hours away. With a wide variety of activities and affordable entrance fees, these parks make for a perfect escape.
  • Leave home without leaving home. The staycation has become a summer mainstay in our state, and with good reason. Arizona is home to more than 70 Four and Five Diamond properties. Many of these properties offer special rates and packages all summer. The Five Diamond Phoenician, for example, has packages starting at just $169 per night.  For a longer escape, the Four Diamond-rated Westward Look Wyndam Grand Resort and Spa in Tucson has rates starting at $109 per night.
  • Vacation ‘on the fly.’ Arizona air travel is projected to see a 4.2 percent increase for Labor Day. The long weekend makes for a perfect time for a short flight or drive to top destinations including San Diego, Las Vegas and Los Angeles. Low hotel rates can be found through AAA’s End of Summer Travel Sale.
  • Road Trippin’. Whether it’s taking a day-drive up to the high country, or crossing state lines, road trips remain the preferred method of travel this Labor Day. Drivers should take advantage of free planning tools such as AAA DriveTrips® to help lead the way. These guides offer an overview map of your route, estimated drive time, mileage count and photos.

To make the most of the final three-day weekend of summer, AAA experts suggest travelers:

  • Avoid peak travel times. Friday, Aug. 31, and Monday, Sept. 2, are slated to be the busiest travel days. If driving, try to avoid hitting the road during peak commute times such as mid-morning and early evening.
  • Seek savings. AAA members will receive discounts at more than 110,000 locations across the country. Always ask if there’s a AAA discount, or if there are any other promotions taking place.
  • Pack patience. Whether driving or flying, the roads and skies will be busy. If driving, exercise patience and allow for extra time to get to your destination. If flying, determine where you’ll park in advance and be prepared at airport security. Have ID and boarding pass in hand, and know what is permitted and not permitted in your carry-on bag.

Read AAA’s full Labor Day travel forecast here.


Research for Labor Day travel projections are derived from IHS Global Insight, which conducts special research for AAA. The Labor Day holiday travel period is defined as travel of 50 miles or more during the five-day period from Thursday, Aug. 29, to Monday, Sept. 2., AAA has been reporting on holiday travel trends for more than two decades.

AAA is the largest leisure travel agency in North America. For more information, visit

AAA Arizona, the Arizona affiliate of AAA, provides automotive, insurance and travel services to more than 840,000 Arizona members. Annually, AAA’s Roadside Assistance responds to more than 450,000 calls for help on Arizona roadways. The auto club also provides discounts and financial services to AAA members. Since its founding in 1927, AAA Arizona has been a leading advocate for the safety and security of all travelers.