Stats: “Surprise Travel” Tops Wish List for Two-Thirds of Americans

This holiday season, most Americans (77 percent) would rather receive experiences over physical gifts, according to new data from travel booking platform GetYourGuide. And, not surprisingly, travel tops the list of experiences most wished for.

When it comes to experiences, what they would most enjoy includes:

  • Surprise travel (63 percent)
  • Tickets to a concert or show (50 percent)
  • An outdoor activity, such as skiing, boating or hiking (43 percent)
  • Food tour or cooking class (36 percent)
  • Wine or beer tasting (31 percent)
  • Or a trip to the museum (29 percent)

But most respondents weren’t picky: 96 percent said they would gladly take any of these experiences. With “surprise travel” coming out on top, it makes sense to hear that more Americans are planning to travel for the holidays this year than last (52 percent compared to 48 percent). 

Americans Are Heading Home for the Holidays

Thanksgiving Day and the day before Christmas are generally the busiest travel days in the U.S., and this year, with decreasing travel restrictions and health concerns, four out of five (80 percent) respondents say they will travel during the holiday season. Last year, only half (52 percent) said they were able to travel for the holidays.

While there is high desire, holiday travelers are making their travel arrangements later than usual this year. Only one in three (30 percent) has booked their holiday travel when the survey was fielded, which is a significant decrease from 58 percent at the same time in 2021. Out of those who have not booked anything yet, 32 percent still plan to book holiday travel. 

This year, Americans are also hoping to spend less on their holiday travels than in 2021. Despite rising airline ticket prices, 42 percent spent or plan to spend under $500 on their holiday-related travel plans as opposed to 32 percent last year.

GetYourGuide commissioned an online survey by Wakefield Research, aiming to uncover what U.S. consumers’ attitudes are towards holiday shopping and travel. The study was conducted among 1,000 nationally representative Americans ages 16 and 56, November 9-14, 2022.

Source: GetYourGuide

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