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Bucking the Trend: Affluent Travelers Remain Active Travelers
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Orlando, Fla. (January 27, 2009) -- While many U.S. travelers have cut spending and “traded down” to more affordable transportation, lodging and related options in recent months, “affluent travelers” (those with an annual household income in excess of $150,000, the top eight percent of U.S. households) appear to be bucking the trend.

According to the just-released Ypartnership 2008 Portrait of Affluent TravelersSM, fully 97 percent of these travelers have taken a domestic leisure trip during the previous 12 months (for an average of just under five leisure trips), and a remarkable 41 percent took at least one trip outside the United States (for an average of just over two such trips). Almost half (45 percent) took at least one business trip during the previous year (for an average of approximately eight trips). Among them, almost all took at least one domestic business trip (for an average of six), and fully one third (35 percent) traveled internationally on business, for an average of six such trips.

According to Peter Yesawich, chief executive officer of Ypartnership, "Although affluent travelers have also been adversely affected by the financial turmoil that has emerged in recent months, particularly as it relates to the degradation of the value of their investment portfolios, they remain rather optimistic about their intentions for both leisure and business travel."

Travel Intentions of Affluent Travelers

Leisure Trips During Next 12 Months % Total
Plan to take MORE trips than last year 25
Plan to take the SAME trips as last year 58
Plan to take FEWER trips than last year 14
Plan to take NONE 3
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Plan to spend MORE than last year 35
Plan to spend the SAME as last year 59
Plan to spend LESS than last year 6
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Business Trips During Next 12 Month % Total
Plan to take MORE trips than last year 29
Plan to take the SAME trips as last year 48
Plan to take FEWER trips than last year 16
Plan to take NONE 7
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Plan to spend MORE than last year 38
Plan to spend the SAME as last year 60
Plan to spend LESS than last year 2
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As revealed by the survey, nine percent (net) of affluent travelers expect to take more leisure trips during the next 12 months than they did during the previous year and a slightly higher percentage (13 percent net) of affluent business travelers report a similar intention.

Yesawich concluded, "While affluent travelers intend to spend more on travel services in the year ahead, other insights revealed in the survey suggest they will still demand far more for their travel dollar."

For further information on the Ypartnership 2008 Portrait of Affluent TravelersTM please visit www.ypartnership.com/?#publications.

Ypartnership is a worldwide advertising and public relations agency that specializes in serving travel, leisure and entertainment industry clients and is co-author of the widely-quoted National Travel MonitorTM with Yankelovich, Inc. For more information, visit www.ypartnership.com

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Contact:

Noel Perkins at 407-838-1797
noel.perkins@ypartnership.com

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Also See: Hotelier’s 2009 Top Ten Internet Marketing Resolutions / Max Starkov & Jason Price / January 2009
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