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Survey: Consumers Plan to Travel More in 2012February 10, 2012 By: Adam Leposa
Good news for the travel sector: according to Travelocity’s annual "Traveler Confidence Report," a majority of consumers (53 percent) plan to travel more in 2012 than they did in 2011 despite a lack of confidence in the economy.
This data represents an 18 percent increase versus 2011. Of those who plan to travel more this year, about two-thirds plan to increase their travel budget in 2012, while one-third will travel more without spending more.
"The travel industry should be encouraged by our findings and take this as a vote of confidence," said Carl Sparks, president and CEO, Travelocity Global. "While increases in spending are being driven by higher prices, travelers are taking more vacations and trips that are longer and farther away this year compared to last."
The 2012 survey saw a six percent year-over-year increase in people who plan to increase their travel budget, and only slightly more than half of respondents have a predetermined travel budget this year. Nearly 50 percent of respondents plan to save money by increasing their comparison shopping, being more flexible on dates and booking further in advance. About 70 percent of respondents intend to book vacation packages combining flight and hotel or book hotels via flash sales, while 40 percent are likely to consider booking an “opaque hotel” through services such as Travelocity’s Top Secret Hotels.
76 percent of respondents plan to spend the same on hotels or increase their hotel spending to account for rising room rates, taking more trips and staying longer. Respondents were unlikely, however, to spend more on hotel services and amenities, such as maid service, newspapers or personal check-in. More than one-third of respondents planned to go on “staycation” by booking a hotel near home for a short getaway, a similar percentage to last year.
79 percent of respondents anticipate spending the same or more on flights this year. Those who plan to increase flight spending from last year (47 percent) are doing so either due to rising airfares or because they plan on traveling differently, such as by taking more trips or traveling further away. The only ancillary service travelers are significantly likely to pay for (52 percent) is checking one bag. As in last year’s survey, the majority are unlikely to pay for other ancillary services like advanced seating assignment, extra legroom, a second bag or early boarding.