Hotwire Survey Says Long Vacations Buck the Supersize Trend

Lazy, long vacations are rapidly becoming a distant memory.
According to a new survey by discount travel site and Harris Interactive
, shorter weekend trips are becoming more prevalent than the traditional vacation of a week or more.
In an online survey of 2,378 Americans, the majority of people (85 percent) are planning one or more weekend trips this year (defined as 2-4 days), with one fifth of them planning five or more of these shorter trips. At the same time, nearly 40 percent of those surveyed do not plan to take any long trips of a week or more.

This trend is most prevalent in the Midwest, where 45 percent say they do not plan to take a long vacation at all, yet 81 percent still plan to take at least one long weekend trip, and nearly half (48 percent) will get away three or more times for a long weekend.

Shorter weekend trips are most popular among the 18 - 34 age group, with 87 percent planning to take a long weekend trip this year. Nearly a quarter of this age group (24 percent) plans to take five or more short trips.

Why the popularity of weekend getaways? Of the people taking more short breaks and fewer long vacations this year:

One third (33 percent) want to save money

One in five (20 percent) don’t want to or can’t take time off work

Fifteen percent don’t have time to plan big trips

Only ten percent said they want to stay closer to home due to travel safety concerns


“Leisure time is a precious element in our lives today, and people are getting creative in maximizing their time off,” said Cheryl Law, Hotwire senior director of consumer research. “With little time for planning a vacation, and fewer opportunities to get away for a large chunk of time, people are taking more frequent, shorter trips. To take full advantage of limited vacation days and avoid being out of the office for too long, the weekend trip is a smart and affordable way to get away.”