Americans age 50 and older plan to take an impressive 4.4 leisure trips on average during 2015 even as more than half of working Boomers report they will be leaving unused vacation time on the table.
With nearly 38 million members, nonprofit AARP recently surveyed a specific set of Boomers — those who have traveled for leisure during the past two years and plan to travel this year — to produce the insightful 2015 Boomer Travel Trends report.
Nearly all of the 50-plus crowd said they will spend all or part of their leisure travel exploring the US. About 55 percent of those polled are planning domestic-only travel, primarily to the South or West and to a lesser extent the Northeast and Midwest. Some 42 percent of respondents look to balance both domestic and international travel in 2015.
Drawn to Europe by the strong dollar, the remaining percentage of Boomers polled are focused on only overseas travel during the year. Most plan to head to Europe, followed by the Caribbean and South America. Also, for the conscientious set that has compiled a Bucket List, about a third of Americans age 50 and older aim to take trips abroad as they tackle this do-or-die checklist.
Several businesses industrywide should reap big benefits from Boomers’ travel bug.
Hotels are a top choice for these avid travelers, whether they’re spending the night in domestic or international locales. Boomers also looked at hanging their hats at resorts, motels, and other accommodations.
With so many trips to research and plan, travelers over 50 tend to rely on a mere handful of resources.
For 85 percent of those surveyed, the planning process involved online resources, such as TripAdvisor, and booking sites Expedia and Travelocity.
Industry Impact — Hotels, motels, and resorts that target travelers to the southern and western US should ensure they are marketing to the 50-plus age group, particularly on their preferred sites: TripAdvisor, Expedia, and Travelocity.