The vast majority of travelers (87 percent) say they won’t change their travel plans as a result of the current travel ban situation, according to a new survey of 400 travelers by black car service GroundLink.
Only seven percent of respondents said they would avoid traveling internationally altogether, while six percent will continue to travel internationally for business but avoid traveling out of the country for leisure. Nearly half of those surveyed (46 percent) are just as concerned about terrorist threats abroad this year as they were the same time last year. Thirty percent said they are neither more or less concerned while 21 percent are more concerned this year than they were last year. Even with talk of increased security screening, more “pat-downs” and delays at customs and immigration, most travelers (56 percent) do not plan to make any changes to their travel plans. However, 39 percent said they would plan ahead and leave earlier for the airport. Three percent said they will reduce their travel in the coming months, and two percent of those surveyed said they would opt for smaller, less congested airports with shorter security lines.
The Middle East ranks highest as the region that concerns American travelers most (44 percent), followed by Europe (22 percent). Asia is only of concern to two percent of those surveyed. Along similar lines, 53 percent will avoid traveling to the Middle East, and seven percent will avoid trips to Europe. Interestingly, twice as many women (eight percent) than men (four percent) surveyed said they would avoid Europe. Only two percent said they would not travel to Asia.
When traveling to regions/countries where travelers are less familiar and/or concerned about their safety, they are more likely to avoid taking public transportation (30 percent), avoid using ride-sharing providers (12 percent) and taxis (five percent) and only use reserved black cars or limousines (28 percent).
When traveling internationally, to determine how early to leave for the airport for their return flight home, most (47 percent) of those surveyed rely on the hotel concierge for their recommendation. Another 32 percent go by what their airline recommends, while seven percent go by GPS or a mapping app. Another seven percent just “go with their gut” and only two percent listen to traffic or weather reports to make their determination.
When asked what are the worst international U.S. airports for international arrivals, customs and immigration, New York’s JFK Airport got the dubious honor, followed by Newark and Miami. The top three airports for international arrivals, according to those surveyed: Denver, Dallas and Houston.