2020 proved to be a tough year for travel and vacations for many Americans and their families because of the COVID-19 pandemic. With the start of 2021 and a hopeful end in sight for the COVID-19 pandemic, many Americans are starting to plan family trips and vacations for 2021. To get a better feel of how people will travel this year, IPX 1031 recently surveyed 2,020 Americans to learn more about their travel plans for 2021 including itineraries, budgets and what accommodations will look like this year.
2021 Travel outlook
48% of Americans are optimistic about traveling in 2021, 25% are somewhat optimistic while 27% say they are not optimistic. 45% of Americans believe travel will begin to return to how it was before the pandemic in 2021. However, 55% of those surveyed say they are uncertain if travel will ever return to normalcy without restrictions.
2021 Vacation plans
When asked about if they plan to travel or take a vacation in 2021, 58% of those surveyed said they plan to travel at some point this year. One third of those who plan to travel this year, say they plan to travel during spring break this year. 31% said they were not sure yet if they would take a vacation this year and only 11% said they would not take a vacation in 2021.
For those who said they will not travel this year, these are the top reasons Americans travelers gave for not wanting to travel:
1. I do not feel safe traveling due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic (80%)
2. I do not have the money to use towards traveling this year (44%)
3. I do not want to travel this year because of local dining/entertainment restrictions in place because of the COVID-19 pandemic (22%)
4. I do not want to travel this year because of travel/flying restrictions in place because of the COVID-19 pandemic (18%)
5. I do not have the days to take off of work for a vacation this year (9%)
It seems that as people start to receive their COVID-19 vaccinations, the more likely they are to travel. 20% of those surveyed said they were not sure when they will travel again.
2021 Vacation budgets
Money was the second most popular reason for those not to travel this year. But for those who do have the money to travel, how much are they budgeting for travel expenses in 2021? The survey from IPX 1031 found that the average 2021 travel budget was currently $2,470. Of those surveyed, 70% said that they could currently afford to take a vacation. If another federal stimulus check is sent out to all American’s, 34% said that they would use their next stimulus check on vacation for themselves or their family.
2021 Vacation length
Now that Americans are more apt to travel in 2021, IPX 1031 asked about how long the typical vacation would last. They found that 43% of those surveyed said they plan to a vacation about the same as they did last year. 29% said they planned on taking a longer vacation in 2021, while 28% said their vacation length would be shorter than last year’s vacation.
42% of those surveyed said they have already booked a trip for 2021. Although even with the optimism, 62% said that they would only travel to areas with a low number of COVID-19 cases. 73% said they were concerned that they will have to potentially cancel a future trip this year because of a spike in COVID-19 cases as their potential travel destination.
Vacation homes and accommodations in 2021
So now that we know that Americans plan to travel more this year, where are they going to stay? Listed below are the most preferred accommodations for American travelers in 2021:
1. Stayin in a hotel (28%)
2. Staying with family or friends (21%)
3. Staying in a short-term rental like an Airbnb or VBRO (17%)
4. Staying in a vacation home or timeshare unit (10%)
5. I am going to vacation at home (9%)
6. I am going to camp or stay in a tent (7%)
7. Other/not listed (8%)
Of the almost 25% of vacation home owners that were surveyed by IPX 1031, over two-thirds say that they have used their vacation home as a primary residence at one point during the pandemic. The trends seem to show that vacation home properties have increased in popularity during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Traveling during COVID-19 in 2021
The next part of the survey asked about traveling and specifically traveling by plane. The airline industry has been one of the hardest hit industries during the COVID-19 pandemic, with many choosing not to fly for safety concerns over the virus. Only 25% of those surveyed by IPX 1031 said that they flew during 2022. 48% of those surveyed said that they would feel safe flying again in 2021. That number jumps up to 80% in 2022. 72% of those surveyed said that they would feel much safe flying on an airplane after they receive their COVID-19 vaccination. 54% said that they feel it is not safe to travel by airplane until they have received their COVID-19 vaccination.
Will Americans travel before getting vaccinated?
The next part of the survey asked Americans if they would travel at all before getting vaccinated. Only 16% of those surveyed said that they would fly or travel before getting vaccinated. That number increased to 45% for those who said they would wait until after they receive their COVID-19 vaccine to travel. 22% said they were not sure currently if they would travel before getting vaccinated or wait until after. 17% of those surveyed said they were not planning on getting vaccinated and would wait to travel until the pandemic has passed. Of those surveyed, 20% said that have not taken a vacation in the last 6 months and another 57% said that they have gone an entire year without taking a vacation.
Infographic by: ipx1031