Despite the challenges of the current financial sentiment, Americans’ excitement for travel remains near record levels (8.1 on a 0-10 scale). Nearly 85% of American travelers have trips planned. Despite the decline in their optimism about their trip volume in the coming months, the typical American traveler says they expect to take 3.5 leisure trips in the next 12-months, up from 2.9 reported at the same time a year ago. On average, American travelers say they have more than 15 days devoted to travel this year. Travel deterrents are down overall, notably gas (34%) and airfare (24%) being too expensive and too many crowds (12%). Prioritizing luxury travel experiences has hit a 12-month high 49.2%—nearly 10-points higher than at the same time last year.
Is engagement up on your organization’s marketing channels? It wouldn’t surprise us if so. With the summer season approaching, 80% of American travelers reported doing some travel dreaming or planning in the last week alone. Over 35% of these travelers said they researched travel ideas online, which is up from 31% who reported such at the same time last year. When recent trip-takers were asked how many hours they personally spent actively planning or researching their trip AFTER they arrived in their destination, the average was 2.5 hours. Note that Millennial and Gen Z travelers are above average at 3 hours, while Boomers are well below, spending just 1.4 hours planning once in-market. Across the U.S., Northeasterners say they spent 2.7 hours, while Southerners report a more relaxed 2.3 hours. Of those still doing trip planning post arrival, restaurant reservations top the list (35.2%), but lodging comes in second (26.4%), followed by attractions (20.0%). Interestingly, after hovering around the 11-week mark, this month the average trip planning window for a 1-week domestic vacation dropped to 10 weeks.
Top sources of travel inspiration continue to be websites found through searches, email campaigns, Facebook, Instagram, and other online article/blog content.