More than half of Americans (57 percent) plan to travel for spring break, according to a recent study by Cars.com. This is actually on par with the number of Americans to travel for spring break before COVID-19, with 54 percent of the same group saying they traveled for spring break in 2019. (For the survey, Cars.com defined “travel” as anywhere over 50 miles from their home). In 2020, only 32 percent of respondents partook in spring break travels.
What’s different is how people are traveling. As it has throughout the entire pandemic, the road trip reigns supreme, according to the survey. Seven in 10 (70 percent) of respondents plan to drive to spring break, with two of three citing COVID-19 as the reason to drive over other forms of public transportation. This is up from 63 percent in 2020 and 57 percent in 2019.
As for air travel, just one in four spring breakers, Cars.com reports, will fly to their destination this year. This is down from 38 percent before the pandemic in 2019 and the 30 percent at the beginning of the pandemic last year.
Even among the majority who still plan to travel, pandemic concerns weighed large: Over half (53 percent) indicated moderate or high concerns around COVID exposure during their trip, even as nearly one-third of the group (29 percent) indicated higher comfort now that vaccinations are underway. Of the 26 percent of respondents who said they would be “staycationing,” six in 10 said that COVID-19 had some impact on their decision.
Of those who are traveling, 41 percent indicated they’re doing so just to get away from home; one-third said they needed to see friends or family.
Cars.com surveyed 1,017 consumers surveyed on February 26.