According to RAC Traffic Watch data, a staggering 16 million cars will be on the roads over the long weekend .
This is up one million on last year and near 2.5 million more than in 2015.
Based on the travel plans of more than 2,000 UK motorists, the RAC is predicting a late spring surge on the roads, with traffic on motorways and major A-roads peaking on bank holiday Monday (May 29) at nearly 5 million journeys.
Saturday (May 27) is also expected to see a significant number of journeys by road – around 4.3 million in total – but it may well be Friday (May 26) that will be most hectic as getaway traffic mixes with normal commuter traffic.
Traffic information company INRIX predicts the M25 is going to be the worst hotspot, especially junction 7 round to junction 16 in both directions, where trips could take four times longer than usual.
But the RAC’s research was conducted before the temperatures started to rise – meaning if anything the roads could be even busier.
RAC traffic spokesman, Rod Dennis, said: “The late Easter has meant there’s been something of a bank holiday bonanza this year, with up to four days off in the space of just six weeks.
"But that’s not stopping UK drivers from taking to the road for a leisure trip this coming weekend, especially as the weather at the start of the weekend at least is set to be dry, sunny and very warm for much of the country.
"While we’re expecting leisure journeys to reach a peak on bank holiday Monday – families setting off for a half term trip or taking a day trip to the coast – drivers should be warned that the roads are likely to see significant congestion on Friday (May 26) as getaway traffic and everyday commuter traffic combines.
"We’re expecting it to be bumper-to-bumper from Friday lunchtime onwards on some of the country’s most popular routes.
“We expect the vast majority of roadworks on motorways and major A-roads to be either put on hold or completed in time for the weekend.
"[This is] good news for drivers but sometimes it only takes a single incident for delays to develop on parts of the road network that are prone to congestion."
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