If you want to spend more of your weekend at the beach and less of it on the road, you'll want to follow our Hudson Valley 4th of July travel timetable.

Experts are warning of unprecedented traffic during this year's long Independence Day weekend. According to AAA, almost 61 million people are planning to hit the road between Wednesday and Sunday, which is about 3 million more than last year. The record-setting traffic will be unavoidable to anyone heading to popular beach and lake destinations this weekend at peak times.

Hudson Valley Travelers Can Avoid All Holiday Traffic This Weekend

While the traffic will be unbearable for most of the weekend, there are times when you and your family can easily breeze through the Thruway, Garden State Parkway or Mass Pike. Waking up just a bit earlier than you normally would can shave hours off of your time sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic.

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While no one likes to wake up early on vacation, doing so can get you to and from your destination much faster. Our family has followed a simple rule for years and have never been stuck in vacation traffic on even the busiest of holidays.

The rule to remember is to aim to arrive at your destination before 9am. By following this strategy you're almost guaranteed to miss any major traffic jams. Departing home just an hour later will result in sitting on the road for much longer, missing much of that prime beach time.

Families with young children should have no problem hitting the road early, but those who have the luxury of sleeping in should seriously consider setting the alarm to avoid a stressful trip. The best part of this system is getting to your destination early to enjoy a nice relaxing breakfast while watching the roads turn bright red on Google Maps. There's no better feeling than knowing you missed all of that traffic and have a whole day of relaxation ahead of you.

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When to Leave the Hudson Valley to Avoid 4th of July Traffic

We've mapped out some of the most popular beach destinations and calculated what time you should leave the Hudson Valley to arrive before 9am. Travel times are all based on leaving from Newburgh, New York so you may need to slightly adjust your departure depending on where you live.

  • Lake George, NY: Depart at 6:45am (travel time: 2:19)
  • Seaside Heights, NJ: Depart at at 6:45am (travel time: 2:18)
  • Atlantic City, NJ: Depart at 6:00am (travel time: 2:54)
  • Jones Beach, NY: Depart at 7:00am (travel time: 1:53)
  • Hyannis, MA: Depart at 5:00am (travel time: 4:09)
  • Lake Placid, NY: Depart at 5:30am (travel time: 3:37)
  • Kennebunkport, ME: Depart at 4:30am (travel time: 4:26)

LOOK: See how much gasoline cost the year you started driving

To find out more about how has the price of gas changed throughout the years, Stacker ran the numbers on the cost of a gallon of gasoline for each of the last 84 years. Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (released in April 2020), we analyzed the average price for a gallon of unleaded regular gasoline from 1976 to 2020 along with the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for unleaded regular gasoline from 1937 to 1976, including the absolute and inflation-adjusted prices for each year.

Read on to explore the cost of gas over time and rediscover just how much a gallon was when you first started driving.

Gallery Credit: Sophia Crisafulli

 

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