October 21, 2021 

Rakuten Advertising recently released the results of its 2021 Travel Survey, which showed that consumers expect to spend on average $1,000 on travel this holiday season and only one in five travelers plan to spend less on travel this year than in 2019. A subset of surveyed travelers planning long-distance vacations (100 miles or more) are more likely to book expensive vacations (more than $2,000) beginning in January 2022. Of those long-distance travelers who are “strongly considering” a 2022 vacation, nearly a quarter (23 percent) are planning on spending up to $5,000 on their travel plans.

The survey of 1,000 Americans provides insights on expected spending habits on travel for the next six months. It showed that even with new surges in COVID-19 cases, a majority of travelers (56 percent) will not change their travel plans, regardless of their level of concern around the Delta variant. More than two-thirds of consumers are considering or have already booked travel during the holiday season. While about 50 percent of travelers said they’ll only travel domestically for the holidays, nearly a third (31 percent) of respondents are planning to travel more during the holiday season than they did in 2019 (November–December) and nearly half (47 percent) plan on traveling the same amount. 

The survey also revealed that consumers are hunting for travel deals across multiple channels. More than 90 percent of travelers reported they’ll seek out deals when making travel-related purchases, with over a quarter (27 percent) saying they will use customer review sites to find these deals, surpassed only by online search results (40 percent). Sites and apps that show offers from multiple brands (22 percent), online ads (22 percent), and card-linked offers (21 percent) are all very popular among travelers when finding deals, rewards and discounts related to travel as well.

Another key finding was that families with higher incomes are more responsive to deals. Families with incomes more than $100,000 are particularly drawn to deals compared to those with incomes less than $100,000, and most often find them on coupon sites. Additionally, these higher-income customers respond well to email and credit card offers, while families with lower incomes are more responsive to online advertisements. 


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