Travel continues to feature prominently in discretionary shopping this year and next, despite rising prices and inflation. That’s the data from a new survey released on Tuesday by the American Society of Travel Consultants (ASTA) ahead of the annual Assembly Day.
The survey, which ASTA called the ASTA 2022 Summer Consumer Tavel Pulse, collected data from 518 U.S. travelers who made at least one overnight trip within six months of the start of the pandemic or later via a 15-minute online survey. ASTA conducted the survey in May 2022 and released the results this week.
Among other things, now that the requirement for testing at entry has been lifted in the US, the survey has shown that the topics on the minds of all travelers are the cost of things and inflation. Spending in the travel industry is already on the rise—average spending per person per day is $512 in 2022, up from $463 in 2019—but consumers are still preparing for travel despite the cost, the study found.
“The main thing that comes to mind is that 87% of respondents believe that consumer product prices were slightly or significantly higher compared to six months before the pandemic,” said John Last, president of the Sports and Leisure Research Group. , which helped ASTA conduct the survey, it said on Tuesday.
Last added that the situation is better in the travel industry (figures range from 72% for hotels to 78% for flights in terms of high prices affecting spending), but still not very good when it comes to consumer attitudes towards prices. However, American travelers are currently not holding back when it comes to travel spending, with 41% of respondents saying they plan to spend a little or a lot more on leisure travel in 2023.
Two-thirds of all respondents plan to travel before the end of the year (50% said they would go on vacation), with the majority going on vacation. And in 2023, there are clear signs for international travel, with 49% of respondents saying they want to travel abroad next year.
There are also optimistic signs of more expensive travel: A study found that three in ten Americans are planning a “dream vacation,” higher than those planning to buy a new or better car (24%), remodel their homes (20%). %), buying expensive consumer goods (16%), buying a new or second home (8%).
And it’s not just about experience for experience’s sake — 80% of respondents said a vacation would do “miracles” for their mental health.
Travel has been and still is in the spotlight after the pandemic.
Where are consumers planning to go?
While there has been a lot of talk about how the pandemic will change the most popular travel destinations in the US, there hasn’t been much change since the pre-pandemic period.
“That’s a lot of the usual suspects,” Last said.
The survey showed that when it comes to domestic travel, Americans still prefer Las Vegas (38%), Orlando (33%), New York 31%), Nashville…