2018 Thanksgiving Travel

2018 News Releases

New York Tops Thanksgiving Destinations for Air Travelers

ARC Data Reveals Air Travel Increased to Most Popular Locations

ARLINGTON, Va. – November 20, 2018 Airlines Reporting Corp. (ARC) reported today that New York is the most popular destination for airline travelers during the 2018 Thanksgiving travel season. ARC’s findings, based on ticket sales data from 12,253 U.S. retail travel agency locations and online travel agencies, indicate that many of the top 10 U.S. destinations feature warmer climates. The study included over 500,000 round-trip itineraries for travel within the U.S.

While New York topped the list for Thanksgiving travel, the number of travelers this year was almost the same as in 2017, with only a very small percentage drop in travelers flying to the Big Apple this year. Las Vegas, ranking third for holiday travelers, will see an 11 percent increase in air travel this Thanksgiving while Los Angeles grew 9 percent and Orlando will see a 7 percent jump.

Overall round-trip ticket prices for holiday travel are up only slightly from 2017. Consumers paid an average of $487 to travel for Thanksgiving, a 2 percent increase from last year.

The 10 top Thanksgiving travel destinations in 2018 are:

  1. New York
  2. Orlando
  3. Las Vegas
  4. Los Angeles
  5. Chicago
  6. San Francisco
  7. Atlanta
  8. Dallas
  9. Washington, D.C.
  10. Miami

Hillary Smith

Notes for Editors:
*Ticket Sales

  • Thanksgiving travel occurred between the Saturday before Thanksgiving and the Monday after Thanksgiving.
  • Average ticket price is for round-trip ticket only and includes all taxes and fees.
  • Airport destinations include the United States with flights originating within the U.S.
  • Results do not include sales of tickets purchased directly from airlines.


ARC accelerates the growth of global air travel by delivering forward-looking travel data, flexible distribution services and other innovative industry solutions. We are a leading travel intelligence company that possesses the world’s largest, most comprehensive global airline ticket dataset, including more than 15 billion passenger flights representing 490 airlines and 230 countries and territories. Our solutions and expertise strengthen economies and enrich lives by connecting stakeholders across the travel ecosystem. For more information, visit arccorp.com.

Connect with ARC


Randy Spoon