Press Releases

INRIX Predicts Thanksgiving Weekend Traffic to Double Around Malls and Airports


  • Shoppers headed to America’s busiest malls could see almost 90% extra travel time
  • Drivers headed to major airports can expect more than a 20-minute delay
  • Airport off-site parking could save travelers as much as 75% compared to onsite parking


Kirkland, WA—November 16, 2016—More than 40 million Americans took to the roads over the course of the Thanksgiving weekend last year.[1] With similar gas prices and a growing economy, drivers this year can expect travel times to more than double around major cities during the holiday weekend. Today, INRIX, the world leader in connected car services and transportation analytics, has released its annual Thanksgiving Traffic Forecast to predict the country’s busiest malls and airports.


Black Friday Mall Forecast

Although online shopping over the Thanksgiving weekend increased 17% year-over-year in 2015,[2] nearly 102 million consumers still left their their homes in search of the best in-store deals.[3] The INRIX Thanksgiving Traffic Forecast has identified some the busiest shopping centers across the U.S. and their anticipated congestion levels during the holiday weekend. INRIX found that suburban shopping centers will experience the highest travel times, up to almost 90% longer than normal.

“For consumers who want to spend the least amount of time driving to the malls, your best bet is to leave before 11:00 a.m.,” said Bob Pishue, senior economist at INRIX. “Shoppers should avoid midday and early afternoon when travel times could be more than double their normal length”


Top 10 Busiest U.S. Shopping Centers Worst Time for Traffic Extra Time at Worst Hour
Roosevelt Field, Garden City, NY 11AM – 1PM 89%
Westfield Garden State Plaza, Paramus, NJ 1PM – 6PM 66%
Woodfield Mall, Schaumburg, IL 1PM – 7PM 66%
Del Amo Fashion Center, Torrance, CA 2PM – 4PM 59%
The Galleria, Houston, TX 3PM – 6PM 54%
King of Prussia Mall, King of Prussia, PA 12PM – 6PM 53%
Bellevue Square, Bellevue, WA 8AM – 11AM 43%
Tysons Corner Center, Mclean, VA 4PM – 6PM 42%
Mall of America, Minneapolis, MN 1:30PM – 3:30PM 32%
Palisades Center, West Nyack, NY 8AM – 10AM 25%
Westfield, San Francisco, CA 8AM – 11AM 23%
Sawgrass Mills, Sunrise, FL 8AM – 10AM 18%


Busiest U.S. Airports Predictions

For those flying out of town for the 4-day weekend, in addition to longer security lines, travelers must  also account for increased driving times to the airport. Although congestion around most airports is expected to be better than last year, travelers could see delays as long as an hour more than normal.

“Historically, Thanksgiving has been the busiest weekend of the year to fly, and this year will be no different,” says Pishue. “Travelers should plan on commute times to airports to be about double longer than normal.”


Metro Area Airport Route Worst Time

for Travel

Freeflow Journey Travel Time at Worst Hour
Chicago Downtown to ORD

via Kennedy Exwy W

7AM – 10AM 23 min 56 min
Los Angeles Downtown to LAX

via I-110 S

7AM – 9AM 22 min 47 min
Charlotte Downtown to CLT

via US-74 W

12PM – 2PM 17 min 46 min
Seattle Downtown to SEA

via I-5 S

8AM – 11AM 19 min 35 min
New York Downtown to JFK

via Long Island Exwy E

1PM – 3PM 24 min 32 min
Dallas Downtown to DFW

via TX-183 W

3PM – 6PM 19 min 32 min
Denver Downtown to DIA

via I-70 E and Pena Blvd

5PM – 7PM 25 min 30 min
Miami Downtown to MIA

via Dolphin Exwy W

4PM – 6PM 8 min 26 min
Houston Downtown to HIA

via US-59 N

3PM – 6PM 18 min 23 min
San Francisco Downtown to SFO

via US-101 S

3PM – 6PM 13 min 19 min
Phoenix Downtown to PHX

via I-10 E

3PM – 6PM 11 min 18 min
Las Vegas Downtown to LAS

via I-15 S

1PM – 6PM 10 min 15 min
Atlanta Downtown to ALT

via I-75 S

10AM – 12PM 10 min 12 min


Airport Parking Rates

The cost of parking at or near airports presents its own levels of frustration. Travelers should consider comparing the costs of onsite and offsite parking options. For example, parking offsite at Seattle, New York, San Francisco and Miami airports could cost 75% less than at terminal lots.

INRIX Parking looked at prices at or near the busiest airports for the holiday. The below is based on the cost of parking for five days:


Airport Onsite Minimum Spend Offsite Minimum Spend
Chicago O’Hare Int’l $50 $35
Los Angeles Int’l $60 $30
Charlotte/Douglas Int’l $25 $20
Seattle-Tacoma Int’l $140 $63
New York JFK Int’l $165 $75
Dallas/Ft. Worth Int’l $45 $30
Denver Int’l $65 $23
Miami Int’l $85 $19
Houston George Bush Int’l $28 $35
San Francisco Int’l $125 $50
Phoenix Sky Harbor Int’l $35 $40
Las Vegas McCarran Int’l $80 $35
Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson Int’l $45 $43


For drivers that want the latest travel information during the Thanksgiving weekend, the INRIX Traffic app (Android and iOS) proactively monitors road conditions to alert drivers of ideal departure times, changes to arrival times and optimal routes. It also offers drivers real-time parking location and reservation capabilities.


Traffic Forecast Methodology

INRIX analyzed the Thanksgiving holiday periods from 2010 to 2015, traffic trends from major national holiday weekends in 2015 and current traffic trends to predict what drivers might expect over the upcoming holiday weekend. In measuring the shifts in traffic congestion over this period, INRIX uses a common measure for congestion called the Travel Time Index referred to in our research as a percentage representing the amount of delay drivers can expect on these days due to traffic.





INRIX is the global leader in connected car services and transportation analytics, a new approach that leverages big data and the cloud to help manage urban mobility. By aggregating a variety of sources and applying intelligence, INRIX delivers comprehensive data and solutions to help move people, cities and businesses forward. Our partners are automakers, governments, mobile operators, developers, advertisers, as well as enterprises large and small.


Media Contact

INRIX Americas: Mark Burfiend






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