Americans are true creatures of habit, according to Travelocity’s forecasting poll which found that more than 60 percent of respondents take at least one annual vacation, and the majority of those travelers (60 percent) go to the exact same spot year after year, despite the variety of choices travelers have today.
Nearly half of these annual travelers still take trips with family every single year, often traveling great distances to come together. In fact, of the travelers who commit to an annual trip, at least 77 percent venture 200 miles or more from home; 18 percent travel to international destinations. The company’s study of more than 2,800 travelers also found that intentions to travel internationally are on the rise as a whole for 2006.
“Despite trend-setting travelers spreading the word about exotic destinations around the world, many people still choose to visit the same destination year after year,” said Amy Ziff, Travelocity’s editor at large who conducted the survey. “Even still, international travel is on the rise, with the Caribbean and Europe leading the way for 2006.”
Additional survey findings include:
Family Travel: Travelers consider their family and friends when they pack up for a road trip, flight, or schedule a business trip.
á Half of all business travelers include a leisure component to their business trips.
. Seventy-two percent of these travelers plan to bring their spouses or children with them on these combined trips.
á At least one in every four respondents plans to travel in 2006 for a special occasion (such as a birthday or anniversary) or family reunion.
á Airline itineraries and the availability of a direct flight are the greatest influencers on travelers’ airline choices, but they are reluctant to pay more than a $50 premium for a direct flight.
á One out of every five believes their 2006 travel plans will be affected by hurricanes and dangerous weather in 2005.
. Notably, only 5 percent of those indicating their 2006 travel plans would be affected said that this would cause them to purchase trip insurance.
á One out of every three respondents felt gas prices affected their road trips in 2005 and will affect them in 2006.
. Of those who indicated they would be affected by gas prices, one in five says they would drastically reduce the number of road trips taken in 2006.
. Similarly, among respondents who are affected, one in four would opt to fly instead of drive in the New Year.
International Travel, 2006 Outlook:
á Most travelers showed a higher interest in international destinations from 2005 to 2006, including: the Caribbean (increase of 8 percentage points) Western Europe (increase of 8 percentage points), Central and South America, Eastern Europe and Russia, Asia, Australia, New Zealand, and the South Pacific.