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Travel for July 4th weekend expected to drop

June 27, 2011 | 11:18 am

Roadtrip Although gas prices are dropping, travel costs are expected to drive down the number of Southern Californians who will hit the road for the July 4th weekend, according to a report by the Auto Club of Southern California.

The Auto Club report, released Monday, found that 2.9 million Southern Californians expected to travel over the weekend, a 2.3% drop from the 2010 July 4th weekend.

But then again, the July 4th weekend last year had the biggest one-year jump in holiday travelers in the last 10 years -- a 38.6% increase compared with 2009.

The rate of decline this year for Southern Californians is nearly identical to the rate drop predicted for all travelers in the United States.

"High gas prices this spring have started to impact travel, but the good news for consumers is that gas prices are continuing to drop," said Auto Club spokeswoman Filomena Andre.

Fuel prices in the Los Angeles area have fallen from $4.08 per gallon for regular gasoline a month ago to $3.85 today, according to the Auto Club.

For those who will travel, the most popular destinations will be San Diego, Las Vegas and San Francisco, according to the Auto Club.

-- Hugo Martín

Photo: Your Scene / Los Angeles Times