The combination of a recovering economy and cheap gas prices will lead to more road congestion on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving 2014

Thanksgiving Traffic Forecast

INRIX Predicts Cities With Worst Traffic This Thanksgiving

More jobs and less expensive gas are usually good things, but throw in the Thanksgiving holiday and drivers across America could be facing longer delays this year as they wend their way to family get-togethers.

That bit of information is courtesy of the annual Thanksgiving Traffic Forecast from INRIX, a big data technology company whose global headquarters are located in Kirkland, Washington.

According to INRIX, "the Wednesday pre-Thanksgiving rush hour is expected to begin two hours earlier than a typical Wednesday with drivers in most cities expecting longer delays."

INRIX suggests that drivers wishing to avoid the worst of the pre-holiday traffic should avoid driving between 2pm and 5 pm.

Top 10 Worst Traffic Cities this Thanksgiving

Not only is INRIX forecasting overall heavier traffic this week, the report also is predicting the top 10 cities where drivers will suffer the worst delays (Rank, Metro Area, 2014 Peak Wednesday Time, Extra Time, Change from 2013):

  1. Los Angeles CA, up 8.5 percent

    3PM-5PM peak traffic
    36 minutes delays

  2. Portland OR, up 6.0 percent

    3PM-PM peak traffic
    35 minutes delays

  3. San Francisco CA, up 13.0 percent

    3PM-PM peak traffic
    34 minutes delays

  4. Seattle WA, up 7.0 percent

    3PM-PM peak traffic
    32 minutes delays

  5. New York NY, up 5.0 percent

    26 minutes delays

  1. Washington DC, up 2.0 percent

    2PM-PM peak traffic
    25 minutes delays

  2. Philadelphia PA, up 6.0 percent

    3PM-PM peak traffic
    23 minutes delays

  3. Boston MA, up 22.0 percent

    2.30PM-4.30PM peak traffic
    20 minutes delays

  4. Chicago IL, up 6.0 percent

    3PM-PM peak traffic
    19 minutes delays

  5. Miami FL, up 6.0 percent

    3.30PM-5.30PM peak traffic
    18 minutes delays

According to INRIX Analyst Jim Bak, "Our advice to drivers wanting to avoid the worst traffic is to leave by 2 p.m. or after 6 p.m. on Wednesday. If it's possible to wait to leave until Thanksgiving morning, roads will be free and clear as long as you're not heading to the Macy's parade or a major shopping center to get a leg up on Black Friday."