U.S. driving soars in 2021 to 3.23 trillion miles, up 11.2% – reuters.com
Vehicles stack up in traffic on their way towards Washington, D.C., via I-395 N in Arlington, Virginia, U.S., November 24, 2021. REUTERS/Leah Millis
WASHINGTON, Feb 18 2022 – U.S. drivers are back on the road in force.
Travel on U.S. roads rose 11.2% in December 2021 compared with December 2020, the second straight month that driving surpassed pre-COVID-19 levels, the U.S. Department of Transportation said on Friday.
The figures reflect more Americans traveling for leisure, more returning to offices and rising deliveries on U.S. roads, experts said.
U.S. driving also rose 11.2% for all of 2021, to 3.23 trillion vehicle miles, up from 2020’s 2.9 trillion. That was the lowest yearly total since 2003 as COVID shutdowns drastically reduced road use.
For all of 2021, drivers drove 325 billion more miles than they did in 2020. Overall 2021 driving was just 1% lower than 2019’s 3.26 trillion miles.
The Transportation Department said drivers logged 268.4 billion vehicle miles in December 2021, up 26.9 billion vehicle miles from the same month in 2020.