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Santa Barbara County to see pre-pandemic number of travelers during Memorial Day weekend

Southwest at SBA
Scott Sheahen / KEYT

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. — More travelers are hitting the rail, road and sky this Memorial Day Weekend than last year. AAA Travel estimates more than 37 million people are expected to travel more than 50 miles. That’s a 60% jump from 2020.

Locally, Santa Barbara Airport is expecting to reach their first 10,000 passenger-week since the pandemic. Before the pandemic, it was common for SBA to see 15,000 passenger-weeks. Airport staff says more flights and new airlines coming in and out of SBA is driving travel. And also more people getting vaccinated.

Nationally, the Mayo Clinic states 50.1% of Americans have had at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. And 40.2% have had at least one dose. Those numbers include Americans under 12-years-old who are not eligible yet for the vaccine.

Santa Barbara County has higher vaccine totals than the national average. SBC Public Health states 53.1% of all residents have had at least one dose. While 43.3% are fully vaccinated. Again those numbers include those under 12-years-old who are not eligible yet.

Paula Twidale is the senior vice president for AAA Travel. She said, “As more people get the COVID-19 vaccine and consumer confidence grows, Americans are demonstrating a strong desire to travel this Memorial Day.”

Lifestyle / Santa Barbara - South County / Video
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Scott Sheahen

Scott Sheahen is a reporter for NewsChannel 3-12. To learn more about Scott, click here.

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