Americans are Keeping Calm and Vacationing On Despite the U.S.’s Economic Outlook

Americans experienced one of the coldest winters this year, sending many people into a tizzy of vacation spending this summer. One report shows that families are spending more money on their trips this year than in 2013.

A recent USA Today article looked into the travel plans of Americans in the next few months, and after speaking with travel counselors through American Express Travel, researchers found that 45% of these counselors reported a rise in bookings this summer. In addition, a technology company, Adobe, asserted that online travel booking sales will gross $61 billion this year, a 15% increase from 2013.

The reason for this spike in vacation sales is because of the recent bitter winter many regions in the U.S. suffered, according to American Express Travel vice president, Laura Fink. She explains that families are ready to head anywhere warm to finally experience some warmth, spending extra money on amenities and other travel perks.

The USA Today added that airline prices and the cost of traveling has also risen steadily. Studies show a 67% hike compared to last year’s prices, with more people opting to take a chance on a different type of vacation. More traditional destinations include Florida, New York, and Paris, but in 2014, travelers have gravitated toward other locations, such as Bucharest, Milan, Brazil, and Hilton Head, South Carolina.

Other reports also show that despite the economic outlook in the U.S., Americans are willing to spend money on costly vacations this summer. A Harris Poll shows that about 66% of Americans already have at least one getaway planned between May and August. The poll also revealed that vacation spending is up roughly $100 on average from the previous year’s travels.

Not everyone is enthusiastic about opening their wallets, though. About 30% of Americans say that the U.S.’s economic future is preventing them from expending travel money this summer.

But even these numbers are down 5% from 2013 — an encouraging sign for the travel industry. While the increase in spending does not necessarily indicate that expendable incomes have increased, it could point toward the acceptance that rising costs are inevitable, and not a reason to stall a summer vacation.

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