PLYMOUTH, MN – Whether it is the strong American work ethic or a new cultural “norm” at the office, a recent consumer survey by Travel Leaders Group reveals that a significant number of Americans can’t – or won’t – fully disengage while on vacation. Over 95% of those polled state they “have or will take” at least one leisure trip in 2014; however, 48.9% of those individuals will check work emails and/or voicemail messages while on vacation. Also, 38.5% of those surveyed are leaving vacation days on the table and not fully enjoying their benefits. The survey was conducted by Travel Leaders Group – a $20 billion powerhouse in the travel industry – from April 6 to April 28, 2014, and includes responses from 2,719 consumers throughout the United States.
“What’s most compelling is that the anecdotal stories about Americans not using all their vacation time and not completely decompressing from life at the office is reflected in our survey findings. It’s fundamentally clear that as a result, vacation time has become an even more precious commodity – the traveling public deserves to make the most out of every dollar spent,” explained Barry Liben, CEO of Travel Leaders Group. “From once-in-lifetime ‘bucket list’ trips to a quick weekend getaway, it is an investment in time and money, which is why our highly-trained travel agents make certain our clients get the most value out of their vacations.”
Liben also pointed to the positive economic findings from the survey. “Make no mistake, vacation travel bookings are very robust this year. Our survey numbers mirror recent findings by PhoCusWright in which there is an increase in leisure travelers and what they are spending,” Liben noted. “More than nine out of 10 survey participants will be taking the same or more trips than last year and 86% of those polled state they will be spending the same or more on their leisure trips this year as compared to 2013 – that’s an increase of 2.5% and 2.6% respectively compared to our survey results last year.”
Key Statistics and Findings: Leisure Travel is a Priority
– Over 95% of those polled say they “have or will take” at least one leisure trip this year.
– Nearly 93% indicate that the total number of leisure trips they anticipate taking in 2014 will be either the same or more than last year, which is up 2.5% over last year. (This year, 36.5% say “more” while 56.1% say “the same.”)
– Also, 86.0% of those polled state they will spend the same or more on leisure trips this year versus 2013, which is an increase of 2.6% over last year’s responses. In 2014, 41.7% will spend “more” and 44.3% will spend “the same” on their leisure trips as compared to last year.
– Top Reasons for Vacation Travel: When asked, “What are the key reasons why you have taken (or will take) at least one leisure vacation in 2014?” the top responses were (participants could select more than one answer):
For rest and relaxation
To see and experience someplace new
I do it every year
For my mental and physical health
I need to get away
– Checking In at Work While on Vacation: When asked, “When traveling for vacation, do you check in with work (check emails, voicemail, etc.)?” over half of those surveyed state that their time away is important and they never check in with work while on vacation.
Never, my vacation is my time to unplug from work completely.
Sometimes, usually just to keep ahead of my emails.
Yes, I still need to be plugged in for work regardless.
– Using All Vacation Time: When asked, “Do you typically use all your vacation days during a calendar year?” over 61% state they do not leave any unused time on the table.
(Retirees were factored out of the following responses.)
No, I leave 1-2 days
No, I leave 3-4 days
No, I leave 5 days to a week
No, I leave more than a week
No, I never take vacations
– Accommodations While Vacationing: There are numerous reasons for vacation travel from visiting friends and family to splurging on a once-in-a-lifetime trip. Consumers were asked to identify the type of accommodations they choose when traveling for leisure (participants could select more than one answer):
Resort or all-inclusive