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Greenville Business Magazine

The Business Narrative: Holiday Travel

Nov 16, 2023 10:27AM ● By Donna Walker

55.4 Million Americans Expected to Travel for Thanksgiving

AAA projects 55.4 million travelers will head 50 miles or more from home over the Thanksgiving holiday travel period.


This year’s Thanksgiving forecast is an increase of 2.3 percent over last year and marks the third-highest Thanksgiving forecast since AAA began tracking holiday travel in 2000.


The top two years were 2005 and 2019, respectively.


“For many Americans, Thanksgiving and travel go hand in hand, and this holiday, we expect more people on the roads, skies, and seas compared to 2022,” said Paula Twidale, senior vice president of AAA Travel.


Most Thanksgiving travelers will drive to their destinations. AAA projects 49.1 million Americans will get behind the wheel, an increase of 1.7 percent compared to 2022.


Drivers could be paying less for gas than last Thanksgiving when the national average was $3.58. 


This year, the national average peaked in mid-August at $3.87 and has been coming down since, despite global tensions causing ripples through the oil market.


AAA expects 4.7 million people will fly over Thanksgiving, an increase of 6.6 percent compared to 2022 and the highest number of Thanksgiving air travelers since 2005.


AAA officials say Tuesday and Wednesday before Thanksgiving are the busiest air travel days ahead of the holiday and the most expensive.


While Sunday is typically the busiest day to return home, AAA data shows Monday is also a popular day to fly back after Thanksgiving.


The number of people traveling by cruise, bus, and train over Thanksgiving is up nearly 11 percent over last year.


AAA expects 1.55 million travelers will head out of town using these other modes of transportation, which took a huge hit during the pandemic but have rebounded nicely.


INRIX, a provider of transportation data and insights, expects Wednesday, Nov. 22, to be the busiest day on the roads during the Thanksgiving holiday travel period, with average travel times as high as 80 percent over normal in some metro areas.


INRIX recommends leaving in the morning or after 6 p.m. to avoid the heaviest holiday congestion.

Core & Main Signs Agreement to Acquire Lee Supply Company Inc.

Core & Main Inc. (NYSE: CNM), a leader in advancing reliable infrastructure with local service, nationwide, has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire substantially all of the assets of Lee Supply Company Inc., a leading specialty distributor and fabricator of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) pipe and other related services, including HDPE fusion equipment rentals and custom fabrication capabilities.


Financial terms weren’t disclosed.


Since 1954, Lee Supply has been a supplier and specialty fabricator of engineered HDPE pipe, fittings, pumps and pipe systems, along with providing rental fusion equipment.


It provides solutions-based services to municipalities, contractors and other environmental and industrial customers.


The company has locations in West Columbia, S.C., Pennsylvania, West Virginia, primarily serving the Eastern United States.


Based in St. Louis, Core & Main is a leader in advancing reliable infrastructure with local service, nationwide.


As a leading specialized distributor with a focus on water, wastewater, storm drainage and fire protection products, and related services, Core & Main provides solutions to municipalities, private water companies and professional contractors across municipal, non-residential and residential end markets, nationwide.


The company has approximately 320 locations across the U.S.

SC Launch Inc. Invests in Pixlmob

South Carolina Research Authority’s investment affiliate, SC Launch Inc., has invested in Pixlmob.


Officials said the $200,000 investment will help the Greenville-based startup continue growing its company, which provides an easier way for real estate photographers and videographers to list high-quality property images.


Pixlmob became an SCRA Member Company in July 2022 and received a $50,000 Acceleration Grant.


It became an SC Launch Inc. Portfolio Company with this investment.


After working in the real estate industry and seeing the problems that photographers and videographers had securing high-resolution images and reels, the Pixlmob team created a software solution that connects them to verified editors with the skills to provide image enhancements that improve the quality and visibility of their photos and videos. 


In addition to photo and video editing services, Pixlmob helps editors earn more money by providing a platform for them to sell their services, attract more customers, and get paid easily. 


Established in 2006, SC Launch Inc. is an independent, nonprofit corporation providing convertible loans and investment funding to qualifying SCRA Member Companies.


The returns on the funding provide additional coaching and grants to next-generation technology startups.


SCRA provides funding and support to accelerate the growth of academic startups; high-quality lab and administrative workspaces; facilitation and funding for partnerships between and among industry, startups, and academic institutions; assistance and funding for the relocation of technology-based companies to South Carolina; and coaching and funding for startups that may also receive investments from SC Launch Inc.

Clean Vehicle Credits Can Help Car Buyers Pay Less At The Dealership

Internal Revenue Service officials say taxpayers who buy a qualifying new or used clean vehicle may be able to transfer their tax credits to the dealer in exchange for a financial benefit – such as a lower cost – starting Jan. 1, 2024.


Taxpayers can now claim tax credits for new and used clean vehicles they buy during the tax year and, starting Jan. 1, 2024, can transfer that credit to the dealership.


IRS officials said that means that the taxpayer who is buying the vehicle can exchange his or her credit for a financial benefit such as reduced final cost.


The financial benefit is equal to the amount of the credit, whether in cash, a partial payment or a down payment, the officials said.


The IRS recently issued proposed regulationsRevenue Procedure 2023-33 and frequently asked questions that cover:


* How taxpayers can transfer clean vehicle credits to eligible dealers.

* How dealers can register with IRS Energy Credits Online to receive advance payments.

* How dealers can lose their registration if they don’t comply with the program's requirements.

*New details on the timing and submission of seller reports.

* Updated information for manufacturers on becoming qualified and how qualified manufacturers can submit monthly reports.

IRS officials say dealers and sellers of clean vehicles should register their organizations immediately using the Energy Credits Online tool.


The IRS strongly urges sellers of clean vehicles to register by Dec. 1, 2023, to receive advance payments starting Jan. 1, 2024.


For updated clean vehicle credit frequently asked questions related to new, previously owned and qualified commercial clean vehicles, see Fact Sheet 2023-22.

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