I always look for alternate routes. I have to travel I-95 for a living
so I am always jumping off and running one of the parallel routes. I have used US 1 from DC all the way to Southern Pines, NC took a bit longer than I-85 but a much nicer drive, I have driven 301 from Florence, SC to Richmond, VA on more than one occasion. It does take longer, sometimes. One 4th of July weekend I had to travel (normally try to avoid that) I used 301, the other part of my crew was stuck on I-95 in a 4 hour back up due to multiple accidents. If you have a good set of maps, like DeLorme
, or a GPS re-routing onto an alternate US route is almost always a good idea.