The State of the American Traveler

Twice a year, Destination Analysts of San Francisco releases findings of their online survey of about 1,000 leisure focused American travelers. The July report released this week had some interesting findings. Here are a few:

  • Average number of leisure trips taken in the past 12 months jumped 4.3% to five trips.
  • However, the number planning to take a leisure trip in the NEXT 12 months has declined 5%
  • Travelers expect to be more frugal over the next 12 months.
  • The greatest factors that have kept people from traveling more has been finances (56%), cost of gasoline (41%) airline travel too expensive (36%) and too busy at work (28%)
  • Given the overall economic climate 62% of those surveyed stated they will seek travel discounts and bargains, 30% will visit less expensive destinations,  24% will reduce the number of leisure trips and 22% will ‘vacation’ at home.
  • Technology and travel planning go hand in hand.  Nearly 43% of the respondents used user-generated content for their planning like reviews of hotels and restaurants. More than 26% used some sort of social media for the travel planning.
  • But printed resources still have a place: Nearly 35% used some sort of printed material like a travel magazine, newspaper travel section or guide book.
  • More and more people are using technology while traveling. 30% took a laptop with them on a leisure trip and 28% used a mobile phone/PDA or hand-held device to access travel information online.
  • Of those who used mobile devices/PDAs, the top uses included finding restaurant info, check the weather, look at maps, use a GPS application for directions and find information on hotels.

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