Traffic Alerts for Ascension Day: Expect Delays and Road Closures

Traffic Alerts for Ascension Day: Expect Delays and Road Closures

May, 9 2024

As we head into the Ascension Day weekend, traditionally a time for relaxation and trips, travelers are facing the prospect of significant delays on the roads. Understanding the traffic patterns and planning accordingly can mitigate some of the stress and ensure a smoother journey during this busy travel period.

Traffic Expectations This Ascension Day

Based on observations from previous years, the eve of Ascension Day, or Hemelvaart as it's known in the Netherlands, is particularly notorious for heavy traffic. Last year, motorists experienced over 1,000 kilometers of traffic jams. While the ANWB (Royal Dutch Touring Club) suggests that the traffic might not reach the same extreme levels this year due to the ongoing May vacation period, significant congestion is still expected, especially on Wednesday evening as the long weekend kicks off.

Areas Most Affected by Traffic

The regions most likely to face heavy traffic include Utrecht, heading towards Veluwe, and the areas around Arnhem, Nijmegen, and Noord-Brabant. These areas are popular not only for their scenic routes and cultural sites but also serve as key thoroughfares for holiday travelers and locals alike.

Additionally, popular recreation spots such as amusement parks and outlet centers are anticipated to see increased visitor numbers, especially on the holiday itself and the following Friday. Daytrippers heading to these destinations should plan their departures carefully to avoid peak congestion times.

Roadworks and Closures

Further complicating traffic conditions this Ascension Day are extensive roadworks around Rotterdam. The A16 motorway will see a partial closure from Wednesday evening to Monday morning. The closure is necessary for the replacement of the overpass over the Hoofdweg near Terbregseplein. Motorists in this area will need to follow diversion routes, which will be clearly marked with yellow signs and information panels.

Advisory for Travelers

Rijkswaterstaat, the Dutch directorate-general for public works and water management, emphasizes the importance of planning ahead. They advise travelers to check traffic conditions before leaving, consider adjusting travel routes or departure times, and follow any diversions or recommended routes to minimize disruptions.

Preparations include ensuring your vehicle is in good operating condition, keeping a GPS or map handy for alternative routing, and perhaps most importantly, packing patience. With areas under construction and high traffic volumes, unexpected delays are likely.

Tips for a Smooth Ascension Day Travel

To avoid being caught in frustrating traffic jams, consider traveling outside of peak times. Early morning or late evening travels can be less congested options. Listening to traffic updates en route can also provide timely information that may help in avoiding hotspots of congestion.

If traveling by car is flexible, exploring alternative means of transportation such as trains or buses could also be beneficial. These options might not only bypass the congestions but also contribute to a more relaxing travel experience overall.

Lastly, those planning to use the roads during this period should be prepared for longer travel times. Bringing along entertainment options for any young travelers, snacks, and water can make a significant difference in travel comfort.

Ascension Day, despite its challenges, remains a popular time for catching up with family, enjoying the outdoors, or just escaping the daily grind. With careful planning and a proactive approach to travel, the long weekend can be enjoyed to its fullest, even with the impending traffic.


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