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Avoid traffic jams, long lines this Thanksgiving with tips from Google Maps

Get to your turkey faster.

Erin Carson Former Senior Writer
Erin Carson covered internet culture, online dating and the weird ways tech and science are changing your life.
Expertise Erin has been a tech reporter for almost 10 years. Her reporting has taken her from the Johnson Space Center to San Diego Comic-Con's famous Hall H. Credentials
  • She has a master's degree in journalism from Syracuse University.
Erin Carson

They should have left earlier. 

Alan Schein/Getty

Many things pair well with Thanksgiving turkey. Road rage isn't one of them. 

Google analyzed traffic data from 2017 to figure out the best and worst times to travel next week, as well as when places like grocery stores and movie theaters will be the busiest, according to a company blog post Thursday. 

Spoiler alert: You're not the only one wanting to hide from Black Friday madness at the local cinema.

Overall, Google found that the day before Thanksgiving between 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. is the worst time to go over the river and through the woods to grandmother's house. If you're willing to set out at 6 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day, by contrast, traffic should be lighter. 

On the return home, avoid Friday and Sunday afternoons.

The blog post also highlights traffic patterns in bigger cities like Detroit, Denver, Charlotte, Tampa and St. Louis.

One more thing: If you're planning on making a liquor store run, expect a longer line Wednesday afternoon. Plan accordingly.