According to new reports, the era of the “staycation” is over for Americans. Instead of staying home and finding cheap ways to relax, American Express is estimating that an increased 75% of consumers will take a summer vacation away from home this year, and will plan to take longer vacations than in the past. Reportedly, 69% of vacationers will go for a full week of relaxation (up from 66% in 2013), and 32% will double that with two solid weeks of vacationing (up from 29% in 2013). Despite the increased interest in finding good vacation spots away from home, as many as 91% of vacationers say that they still want to find new ways to cut costs and make their vacations more affordable.
Countless numbers of articles have appeared on the web since the weather started warming up, all giving advice about how to save anything from a few cents to hundreds of dollars in vacation costs. Many travel advisers suggest that anyone intending to take a big trip should start planning well in advance and should take advantage of different online travel services which publicize sales and lower rates of airlines, hotels, and stores.
Other travelers, however, are paying more attention to the quality of services first, and then discovering that doing so may actually be financially beneficial. The Boston Globe recently reported that an increasing number of travelers are turning to real-life travel agents, as well as other services that can offer expert planning, instead of turning to online travel websites like Expedia or TripAdvisor.
The Boston Globe article focuses on full-service travel companies that help plan extensive (and expensive) vacations, but one point from the article can clearly apply to vacationers across the board: receiving help from a business familiar with the tourism industry can significantly reduce the stress of traveling. Whether this means consulting a travel agent, hiring a tour guide, or renting a charter bus, travelers are finding that the best way to relax is to simply let the professionals handle the details.
The growing interest in full-service travel companies may be due to a stronger and more stable economy, but it is likely that travelers are also realizing that a good vacation depends more on quality rather than quantity. After all, the point of a vacation is to relax, isn’t it?