SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Many people might be choosing to avoid the traffic this year and stay home for Thanksgiving for various reasons.

“Traveling is getting expensive, gas is getting pretty high right now,” Steven Blair from Sioux Falls said.

“Mostly everybody is going to travel to come to our house,” Daniel Cannon from Sioux Falls said.

But there are still a lot of people planning to travel for the holiday — 54.6 million people nationwide by AAA’s projections.

“Just trying to make it home for the holidays,” Michael Doil from Texas said while in Sioux Falls.

Over 175,000 South Dakotans will be leaving home for Thanksgiving.

“We’re not quite back to the travel volume that we had before the pandemic in 2019, but we’re getting very close to that. We anticipate this will be the third busiest Thanksgiving holiday travel weekend since we started tracking in the year 2000,” Shawn Steward, the AAA South Dakota spokesman said.

Before you start your holiday travels, there are a few things that AAA suggests you make sure are all good with your car before you leave.

“Make sure especially that the battery is well charged, has a good charge to start your engine so you don’t get stranded in this cold weather especially. Tires are a big issue that we see as well. Make sure that your tires are properly aired up,” Steward said.

AAA also suggests you have certain things ready to go in your car in case of an emergency. Things like blankets, extra clothes, jumper cables, a shovel, an ice scraper and a fully charged phone. Once you have everything checked off on your list, you can hit the road.

“Be careful and don’t tailgate,” Doil said.

“Just slow down. Just take her easy. With the weather, it might be a little more trickier this year,” Katherine Hoefker from Minnesota said.

AAA predicts over 160,000South Dakotans will travel by car, nearly 9,000 will be in the air and more than 8,000 will be on a bus, train or cruise for Thanksgiving.