Hotel Online  Special Report


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 More Than 88% of Travelers Not Able to Let Go
of Their Cell Phone, Laptop, or PDA While
on Vacation / Travelocity Survey
SOUTHLAKE, Texas - June 23, 2005 -- While it may not be a complete surprise that consumers are becoming increasingly dependent on their personal technology, Travelocity's latest survey of leisure travelers showed that even while "getting away", many vacationers remain tied to technology and can be "plugged-in" to the world from even the most remote places. According to this recent Travelocity(R) study conducted in partnership with nationally-syndicated family travel columnist Eileen Ogintz, one in three people actually find it MORE stressful to NOT be plugged-in, whether via cell phone, laptop, or PDA.

More than half of travelers between the ages of 22 to 45 admit to sneaking away from family and friends to check and respond to e-mail, voicemail, or instant messages. Also, most travelers in this age group impose no limits whatsoever on how frequently they "plug in" while vacationing. So, why do vacationers need to remain continuously connected even when they are supposed to be away?

"Technology has become such an integral part of travelers' lives that many of us find it impossible to completely unplug," said Amy Ziff, Travelocity's editor-at-large. "This is an astonishing trend that demonstrates a change in how we vacation. It's interesting to consider just how much rest and relaxation vacationers are really getting while away."

The joint poll conducted from April 21 - 26, 2005 consisted of responses from 834 Travelocity members. The poll was conducted to obtain information about travelers' use of electronic devices, such as laptops and mobile phones while on vacation, and their impact on vacation planning and activities. 

Behavioral Statistics

  • While hotels, airlines, and airports are aggressively moving towards providing easy, affordable high-speed Internet access, most travelers (84 percent) say they do not select their vacation destinations based on the type of access they have to technology
  • Forty percent of travelers are checking their work email while on vacation
  • Thirty Three percent of travelers have mobile phones handy to stay in contact with work even when it's not related to a work emergency
  • One in every four respondents will bring laptops on their vacation
  • Most travelers report that they will go several days without checking e-mail or voicemail, 13 percent report that they never check their messages at all, and 6 percent indicate that for them it's only a matter of hours between checking in
"Clearly, it's harder and harder for everyone to totally unplug on vacation, especially when the travel industry makes it so easy to stay connected wherever you are," said Eileen Ogintz, author of the nationally syndicated family travel column 'Taking the Kids'. "But there's nothing wrong with setting some limits, whether for the kids to text message friends at home or for mom and dad to catch up on work e-mail and phone messages. The point of vacation, after all, is to reconnect with one another."

Age Demographics:

  • Travelers who are most likely to be plugged-in while on vacation are among the younger demographic (primarily between  the ages of 22 and 45)
  • The most plugged in travelers are those who are from 22 - 34 years old (81 percent), and they use their electronic devices most commonly for non-work related activities, such as checking personal e-mail, keeping up with current events, or keeping tabs on weather
  • Most travelers check their personal e-mail at least once while on vacation with up to half checking work-related e-mail as well:
    • Sixty percent to 77 percent of respondents check their personal e-mail while away on vacation (60 percent of those aged 60-77, 77 percent of those aged 22-34)
    • Nearly 30 percent of respondents ages 60 - 70 check work e-mail whereas about 50 percent of respondents ages 35 - 45 reportedly check work e-mail.
  • Thirty six percent of children are plugged in while on vacation, whether using their music players, handheld games or mobile phones
  • On average, travelers take between one and two electronic devices with them, while the 35 - 45 year age group is likely to pack the most on average
  • The 35-45 year olds also are the most likely (29 percent) to bring along handheld or computer games
It's interesting to see the evolution of younger age groups who incorporate technology more and more into their everyday lives, for entertainment, relaxation, and just to stay in touch," said Ziff. "As the tech savvy grow up, electronic devices seem to grow with them every step of the way."

About the Travelocity Plugged-In Poll
The Travelocity study was fielded from April 21 - 26, 2005 via a survey of Travelocity members who have traveled in the previous 12 months. Results were accumulated from more than 900 responses received. Leading travel Web site Travelocity developed the survey in conjunction with family travel columnist Eileen Ogintz, author of the nationally syndicated 'Taking the Kids' column, distributed by Tribune Media Services. For complete details on the study, visit www.travelocity.com/pluggedinpoll.

About Eileen Ogintz
Eileen Ogintz's latest books include Globe Pequot for kids: The Kid's Guide: Cruising Alaska and The Kid's Guide: New York City. E-mail Eileen travel questions at eileen@takingthekids.com.

About Travelocity
Travelocity's industry-leading technology and straight-talking, honest information help travelers take more rewarding and affordable trips. With millions of registered users and booking $4.9 billion of travel in 2004, Travelocity(R) negotiates thousands of low-priced deals with the world's most reputable travel providers - top airlines, hotels, car rental companies, cruise lines, and other destination attractions and services. Based in Southlake, Texas, Travelocity is owned by Sabre Holdings Corporation (NYSE:TSG), a world leader in travel commerce. More information about Sabre Holdings is available at www.sabre-holdings.com

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Contact:

Travelocity
www.travelocity.com

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Also See: Hilton Responds to Business Traveler Survey that Only 18% Trust a Hotel Alarm Clock, Will Install Custom Designed Clocks in Nearly 250,000 Rooms / March 2005
What's the Point of Offering High Tech Gadgets in Hotel Rooms When It Provides the Guest with Total Frustration / Emmanuel Gardinier / February 2005


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