An improving economy, a better job market, rising wages and low gas prices all mean that the most Americans since 2007 will travel during the Thanksgiving holiday, AAA Auto Club officials project.

And, officials say, it is not out of the question that the all-time Thanksgiving holiday travel record could be broken because of these positive economic indicators.

AAA Auto Club projects that 48.7 million people will take trips during the Thanksgiving holiday period, which begins at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday and ends at 11:59 p.m. Sunday. The all-time record was set in 2007 when 50.6 million people traveled for Thanksgiving.

In 2015, AAA officials projected that 46.9 million people would travel. By the end of the holiday period, officials learned that 800,000 more people than expected traveled last Thanksgiving.

“We are looking at a very busy travel period,” said Mark Jenkins, a AAA spokesman in Florida. “The forecasts are usually conservative, so it is possible we could approach the record.”

AAA considers someone a Thanksgiving traveler as some who drives, flies or takes other transportation to go at least 25 miles from home, or 50 miles round trip.

A recession that hit the United States in 2008 led travelers to stay at home. In 2008, only 37.8 million people traveled for the holidays, down by 12.8 million travelers in just one year. Since 2008, there has been a steady climb in the number of travelers.

AAA officials said Thanksgiving travel is expected because of the improvements in the economy during the second half of the year, including rising wages, increased consumer spending and overall strength in consumer confidence, a press release states.

Despite incremental increases in the national average price of gasoline during the past couple months, AAA estimates U.S. drivers have saved more than $28 billion so far at the pumps this year compared to the same period last year, the release states.

“This is the most traveled holiday of the year, and as usual, there is an emphasis on road trips,” said Joseph J. Richardson Jr., president and CEO of AAA Auto Club Group, in the press release. “If you are one of the 43.5 million people on the road, we urge you to be patient in traffic and limit distractions while behind the wheel.”

Officials said 89 percent of holiday travelers will drive this Thanksgiving. The 43.5 million Americans planning a Thanksgiving road trip represents an increase of 1.9 percent over last year. Air travel is expected to increase 1.6 percent, with 3.75 million Americans flying to their holiday destinations. Travel by other modes of transportation (cruises, trains and buses) will increase only slightly this Thanksgiving, to 1.45 million travelers.

“Gas prices are now on a similar course as last year, due in large part to lower oil prices,” said Stephanie Milani, a AAA spokesman in Tennessee, in a release.

While gasoline prices are still low, air fares have increased significantly since last Thanksgiving. The AAA Leisure Travel Index shows that airfares are forecast to be about 21 percent more this Thanksgiving, with an average round-trip flight costing $205 for the top 40 domestic routes.

Meanwhile, AAA expects to rescue more than 370,000 motorists this Thanksgiving, with the primary reasons being dead batteries, flat tires and lockouts. AAA recommends that motorists check the condition of their battery and tires. They should also pack emergency kits before hitting the road.

Jenkins said AAA projections are based on economic forecasting and research by IHS Markit. Jenkins noted that the London-based business information provider teamed up with AAA in 2009 to jointly analyze travel trends during major holidays. AAA has been reporting on holiday travel trends for more than two decades.