Unlike a year ago, folks are going to be taking to their cars this weekend in New England as fear about the spread of COVID-19 eases.

AAA estimates that 1.7 million people will travel 50 miles or more from their homes. The vast majority will be driving this holiday weekend in New England.

Higher gas prices won't put a dent in the “pent-up frustration” and “cabin fever” experienced by New Englanders, said AAA’s Chris Hill.

He said that he expects nationwide travel to be up 60% over last Memorial Day weekend, when hotel rooms were empty, restaurants were closed, and quarantines were in effect in many places.