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40% of Americans Anticipate Travelling More in 2024 Compared to Last Year

In 2024, the most common reasons people are traveling indicate a desire for meaningful connections and relaxation.
Cover Image Source: Photo by Catarina Sousa | Pexels
Cover Image Source: Photo by Catarina Sousa | Pexels

Despite global challenges such as geopolitical unrest, flight delays, and escalating prices both abroad and domestically, travel took center stage in 2023. This trend is expected to persist this year, with a survey indicating that 92% of travelers expect to travel at least as much in 2024 as they did in the prior year. Despite inflation, 35% of travelers maintain last year's budget, while 39 percent have increased theirs.

Travel Pexels | By Oleksandr P
Image Source: Travel Pexels | Photo by Oleksandr P

"2023 has been an incredible year for U.S. and Canada travel to international destinations, particularly Europe. Since borders opened up and testing was no longer an issue, European travel has exploded. The overall percentage of travel as it contributes to GDP is high, so it shows that this sector will not be impacted as much as others in 2024," said AAA Senior Vice President Paula Twidale.

Last year, the average American embarked on 2.1 leisure trips, with 36% indulging in three or more excursions. A staggering 92% of travelers anticipate maintaining or increasing their travel frequency in 2024, with 40% planning to travel more—a slight dip from the previous year's 49%.

However, about 46% of respondents express a likelihood of adjusting their 2024 travel plans due to ongoing inflation, with strategies including reducing the number of trips and opting for road trips over air travel. Despite economic challenges, travel remains a priority for most Americans, especially younger demographics like Gen Z (56%) and Millennials (49%).

Image Source: Pexels/Kelly
Image Source: Pexels | Photo by Kelly

In 2024, the most common reasons people are traveling indicate a desire for meaningful connections and relaxation. Nearly half of the respondents, 46%, prioritize visiting family and friends, while 36% of respondents are interested in beach vacations. Road trips are also popular, with 34% of respondents opting for this classic travel experience, indicating a preference for adventure and exploration.

"Travel is being attached more closely to identity, with purpose and meaning embedded into decisions and immersion being increasingly important, whether within a community of fans, our cultural exploration or within ourselves," said Lee Chambers, Psychologist and founder of Essentialise.

Image Source Photo by Te lensFix | Pexels
Image Source: Photo by Te lensFix | Pexels

Regarding payment methods, credit cards remain the preferred choice for 60% of travelers when covering travel expenses. Notably, 57% of respondents utilize credit cards offering travel benefits, although this figure has slightly decreased from 66% in the previous year.

Moreover, 38% of travelers use cash, while 12% leverage Buy Now, Pay Later services, indicating a pragmatic approach to financing trips and managing expenses.

Airplane Window while Travelling | Unsplash | Photo by Eva Darron
Image Source: Unsplash | Photo by Eva Darron

To navigate the challenges posed by high prices and inflation, strategic planning is essential. Travelers can optimize their budgets by booking in advance, monitoring price fluctuations, and selecting destinations that offer the best value for their money. Choosing the right travel credit card is also important. Whether opting for cash-back cards or those with specific travel perks, travelers have a variety of options to tailor their choices to their individual needs and maximize their benefits.