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Photo: Gary Hershorn/Getty Images

More than 54 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more away from home this Thanksgiving, the highest volume since 2005, the American Automobile Association says in a new report.

Why it matters: 2.5 million more people are traveling than last year, and the roads will get the brunt of those Turkey Day travelers. For the nearly 90% of Americans driving to Turkey Day, INRIX, a global mobility analytics company, predicts travel times in the most congested cities in the U.S. could be as much as four times longer than a normal trip — worse than last year.

What's new: Cities down south are becoming more popular the past few years for Thanksgiving travel destinations. Punta Cana, Dallas/Fort Worth and Miami are all gaining popularity as holiday spots.

By the numbers: AAA predicts drivers will experience the greatest amount of traffic congestion during Thanksgiving week from Wednesday through Sunday.

  • The majority of travelers — 48.5 million — will drive this Thanksgiving, a 5% bump from last year. Car rentals are in favor of drivers this year, too: averaging $63 a day, 10% less than last year, according to AAA’s Leisure Travel Index.
  • Expect long security lines in airports across the country. More than 4.2 million people will fly to their destinations this year, a 5.4% increase over last year — a bigger jump than any other category of travel. Travelers who bought one to two months in advance paid an average of $478 roundtrip.

One layover thing: Airlines and airports are giving flyers more non-stop flights for the upcoming holiday season, The Wall Street Journal reports. For example, this winter opens up Saturday-only nonstops to Palm Springs from Newark and JFK from airlines like United and Alaska Airlines, respectively.

Go deeper

Brazil begins distributing AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine

Containers carrying doses of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine arrive in Brazil. Photo: Maurio Pimentel/AFP via Getty Images

Brazil on Saturday began distributing the 2 million doses of the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine that arrived from India Friday, Reuters reports.

Why it matters: Brazil has the third highest COVID-19 case-count in the world, according to Johns Hopkins University data. The 2 million doses "only scratch the surface of the shortfall," Brazilian public health experts told the AP.

Sullivan speaks with Israel's national security adviser for the first time

Israeli national security adviser Meir Ben Shabbat U.S. Photo: Mazen Mahdi/Getty Images. U.S. national security adviser Jake Sullivan. Photo: Chandan Khanna/Getty Images

U.S. national security adviser Jake Sullivan spoke on the phone Saturday with his Israeli counterpart Meir Ben Shabbat, Israeli officials tell Axios.

Why it matters: This is the first contact between the Biden White House and Israeli prime minister's office. During the transition, the Biden team refrained from speaking to foreign governments.

Biden speaks to Mexican president about reversing Trump's "draconian immigration policies"

Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador. Ismael Rosas/Eyepix Group/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

President Biden told his Mexican counterpart, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, on a phone call Friday that he plans to reverse former President Trump’s “draconian immigration policies.”

The big picture: The Biden administration has already started repealing several of Trump’s immigration policies, including ordering a 100-day freeze on deporting many unauthorized immigrants, halting work on the southern border wall, and reversing plans to exclude undocumented people from being included in the 2020 census.