Americans are preparing to travel in large numbers over the July Fourth weekend as many people seek to return to traditional holiday routines following more than a year of pandemic worries and restrictions.
The travel group AAA forecasts that more than 47 million people will travel by car or plane this weekend in the United States. That represents a return to 2019 travel levels and is 40% higher than last year.
Americans traditionally celebrate the Independence Day holiday with cookouts, fireworks, and visits with family and friends.
Large gatherings are also back this July Fourth, with major events being planned across the country.
Nashville, Tennessee, is expecting up to 400,000 people to visit the city for its celebration featuring country star Brad Paisley, while Huntington Beach in Southern California is planning a three-day festival that could attract a half-million people.
Other celebrations, however, have been altered by the coronavirus pandemic. A July Fourth concert traditionally held in Boston that typically draws hundreds of thousands of people to the Charles River has been moved to the Tanglewood music center 160 kilometers away.
Concert organizers said they did not have enough time to plan the massive event in Boston after local officials had lifted coronavirus restrictions at the…