More than 2 years since the start of the pandemic, Americans estimate that gas costs and inflation will have a greater influence on their summer vacation plans than COVID-19 worries, according to a new Morning Consult study commissioned by the American Hotel & Lodging Association.
Memorial Day weekend kicks off the summer travel season, which is generally a busy period for the hotel sector. And, this year, over seven in ten Americans (69%) expect to travel this summer, with 60 % expecting to take more holidays this year than in 2020-21.
However, new concerns about gas prices and inflation are influencing Americans’ travel plans in several ways.
Key Findings of The Survey:
- 57% are planning a family trip this summer, intending to stay in a hotel.
- In comparison to 2020-21, 60% expect to take more holidays this year.
- 57% intend to take longer vacations.
- 56% are likely to travel to distant locations
- Gas prices, according to 82%, will have at least some influence on their vacation destination.
- Because of current gas costs, 57% intend to take fewer leisure trips, 54 % intend to take shorter leisure trips, 44% intend to postpone excursions, while 33% intend to cancel with no plans to reschedule.
- 90% believe inflation is a factor in selecting whether to travel in the next three months (39% major consideration, 31% moderate consideration, 20% slight consideration, 10% not a consideration)
- COVID-19 infection rates are a factor for 78% of Americans when determining whether to vacation this summer (33% major consideration, 23% moderate consideration, 22% slight consideration, 22% not a consideration)
“Just as COVID’s negative impact on travel is starting to wane, a new set of challenges is emerging in the form of historic inflation and record-high gas prices. We will be keeping a close eye on these issues and urging Congress and the administration to do the same to help ensure they don’t negatively impact hotels’ continued pandemic recovery,” said Chip Rogers, president, and CEO of AHLA.