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The Best Time to Leave NYC to Avoid Thanksgiving Traffic

Nothing should come between you and your pumpkin pie
When to Leave NYC for Thanksgiving Travel
Photo: Andreas. via Flickr

There's not much that can get in between us and a turkey-laden buffet table. Well, except all those other travelers on the road heading home for Thanksgiving.

Luckily, if you're leaving NYC this week, there's a way to spend less time in the car with the same album on repeat and more time stuffing your face with pumpkin pie. After analyzing data trends from the past year, Google has determined the best times to leave the city.

If you want to experience blissfully open roads, set your alarm clock for Wednesday at 4 a.m. For those who'd rather hit snooze for a few more hours, the next best time is 6 a.m. Thanksgiving Day. Meanwhile, travelers departing the city Wednesday afternoon and early evening should probably add a few more songs to their road trip playlists. (Non city dwellers, don't despair: Google's also included data for more than 20 other cities.)

For the return trip, Friday at 4 a.m. and Saturday at 6 a.m. are your best bets, while Sunday at 3 p.m. is the worst. But, hey, even if you do get caught in traffic on the way home, this time you'll have Thanksgiving leftovers to keep you company.

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