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Old 12-23-2015, 02:39 PM   #1
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Question Christmas-New Years Travel Days

Several times we've made the Journey to Florida around the Christmas holidays. One year we went the day after Christmas, ran into construction south of Atlanta all the way to the Florida border. I think the fastest we got was 25. The next year we left the first week of January and there was an accident at Valdosta, GA. We sat on the Interstate for over 3 hours. Last year we went the second week of January. It was busy, but no major delays.

I know accidents happen but this year we're making the journey again, just wondering what days to avoid. We live close to I-75 and I had to go to the storage lot and come back that way. It's already starting to build up. Traffic is moving OK but people will be rolling soon, getting somewhere for Christmas Eve or Day.

Here's what I've heard:
Christmas Eve or day before - Bad
Christmas Day - Good
Week between Christmas and New Year's Eve - ????
New Year's Eve/next morning- Very bad (people have been drinking)
New Year's Day after morning - Good
First week of January - ???
Second week of January - Personal experience of 1 trip was good

Our current plan is to get to Marietta, GA on 12/30, spend a couple of nights with family, head out on January 2, stop again at the border for a night, then finish the journey.

Thoughts?

Has anyone seen the temps in Florida this week? It will be in the upper 80s after Christmas.
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Old 12-23-2015, 03:23 PM   #2
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Dec 30 is probably a good option. That's a Wednesday, middle of the holiday week. January 2 may not be the best option, here's why....

I-75 in Henry County, Ga, (south Side of Atlanta) is under heavy construction; read: miles and miles of back-ups. There is about a 15 mile stretch that's just a mess and will be for the next several years. The state is adding toll lanes thru there and it's a nightmare. That area is a mess on any holiday weekend and of course during rush hour. If it were me, I would leave Marietta on Monday morning around 9 or 10 am. That'll be your best bet to get thru the Atlanta traffic (light after 10) and into/thru the construction zone before the afternoon rush hour. EXPECT DELAYS at any time of the day, even during the night, as they have random closings to accommodate moving equipment around and (recently) changing traffic flows to newly routed lanes. Did I mention this is a real mess?

If you're not familiar with the area, this is the length of the interstate that runs roughly from State Hwy 138 in Stockbridge south to a few miles past Locust Grove. I DO NOT recommend other routes near the interstate, like Highway 23/42 as they are just as crowded. Can you guess this is where we live?

Hollar back if you need more info.

Jim
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Old 12-23-2015, 03:35 PM   #3
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Dec 30 is probably a good option. That's a Wednesday, middle of the holiday week. January 2 may not be the best option, here's why....
Jim
Hi Jim, thanks for the information. How about if we left Marietta on New Year's Day, Saturday. Would that be a better option do you think?
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Old 12-23-2015, 03:43 PM   #4
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That might be an even better option--traveling on the holiday. In that case, I would try and leave early in the morning. Holiday weekends that stretch seems to be worse in the afternoons. Maybe you can get ahead of the holiday revelers from the night before.

Jim

Edit: One common sense thing, try to stay in the center lanes if possible. The lanes do shift around a bit as different pieces of the route are worked on.
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Old 12-23-2015, 11:16 PM   #5
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That might be an even better option--traveling on the holiday. In that case, I would try and leave early in the morning. Holiday weekends that stretch seems to be worse in the afternoons. Maybe you can get ahead of the holiday revelers from the night before.

Jim

Edit: One common sense thing, try to stay in the center lanes if possible. The lanes do shift around a bit as different pieces of the route are worked on.
I like the center lane; more escape options. OK, January 1 is now plan A. Leave after the drinkers are home and before the other snowbirds get going. Hopefully I can be south of Valdosta by lunch.
Thanks for the advice.
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