About 5.5 million Southern Californians are expected to travel over the upcoming holidays – a 2.2 percent increase over last year, the Automobile Club of Southern California reported Monday.Eighty percent of Southern California travelers, or nearly 4.4 million people, are expected to drive to their holiday destinations, compared with 4.3 million holiday motorists last year, the Auto Club reported.More than 850,000 Southlanders will take a holiday plane trip this year compared with 822,000 last year, while almost 275,000 will take a cruise, bus or train trip, compared with 270,000 in 2004, according to the Auto Club.“With Christmas and New Year’s holidays taking place on the weekend for the second year in a row, we’ll again see many families taking advantage of the three-day weekends by taking a trip,” said Auto Club spokeswoman Carol Thorp.Statewide, nearly 7 million motorists will take holiday driving trips of 50 miles or more, while nearly1.4 million will fly. More than 440,000 will take another mode of travel.Across the country, 63.5 million Americans are projected to take holiday trips – a 1.7 percent increase from last year.The top two air and cruise destinations for Southlanders this year are Hawaii and the Caribbean, according to a survey of AAA travel agents. The top three driving destinations are San Francisco, Las Vegas and Palm Springs.Gasoline prices in most areas are less than 15 cents higher than they were a year ago, but still well above $2 per gallon. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORERose Parade grand marshal Rita Moreno talks New Year’s Day outfit and ‘West Side Story’ remake160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!