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Australia, Hawaii Top Consumer Travel Choices

September 25, 2009 By: George Dooley

  Travel plays an integral role in the average American’s life, a new survey by Travel Leaders confirms. “If given the choice of traveling, shopping, paying bills, investing or saving $5,000 – those polled said they would spend nearly 60 percent of that money on travel, indicative for just how strongly consumers feel about seeing the country, the world and taking a break from everyday life,” Roger E. Block, president of Travel Leaders Franchise Group said.

Conducted throughout August 2009 and including responses from 625 consumers across the U.S., the Travel Leaders findings include Australia as their top dream international destination; Maui, HI, as their ideal U.S. beach destination; and if each won $5,000, the average participant would spend nearly $3,000 on travel.

While Travel Leaders has a long history of providing detailed travel trends based on bookings and data gathered from hundreds of its travel experts from across the country, this survey marks the first-ever consumer travel survey it has conducted. The first portion of the results were released on September 14, 2009.

“The consumers we surveyed confirmed Australia’s status as the premier dream destination for Americans by a wide margin,” stated Roger E. Block, CTC, President of Travel Leaders Franchise Group. “Visitors can experience wide-ranging diversity ‘Down Under’ – including metropolitan sophistication of Sydney and Melbourne, the alluring wine country region, the rugged outback, the Great Barrier Reef and so much more.”

“Our findings also point to an integral role travel plays in the average American’s life,” Block noted.

Key Questions, Statistics and Findings:
If you won $5,000, how much would you use toward:

(Because of rounding and averages, total overall average is slightly under $5,000)


                                    Overall Average

Travel                           $2,910.30

Shopping                          $395.81

Paying bills                       $768.75

Investments                     $215.05

Savings                            $691.20


 If you won a trip anywhere in the U.S., which would you choose? (614 responses)

1.       Cruise                                 33.1%

2.       Island Destination                23.1%

3.      Beach Destination               18.4%

4.       Resort Destination               7.8%

5.       Major U.S. City                   6.2%


Top “ideal U.S. island destination” was Maui, HI, followed by the U.S. Virgin Islands and Hawaii (The Big Island), HI, respectively. Top “ideal U.S. beach destination” was Hawaii, followed by Florida and then California. Top “ideal U.S. city to visit” was New York City. Top “ideal national park to visit” was Yellowstone. Top “ideal U.S. mountain destination” was Colorado. Top “ideal U.S. golf destination” was a tie among Arizona, Hawaii and North Carolina.     

What is your dream international destination? (609 responses)

1. Australia                             

2. Italy                                     

3. (tie) Greece                         

3. (tie) Tahiti                           

5. Germany                             

6. (tie) Ireland                         

6. (tie) New Zealand               

8. Fiji                                       

9. (tie) Egypt                           

9. (tie) France                         



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