Despite rising gas prices, 1 in 3 Americans are planning drive trips.

Americans are still taking summer vacations, but they're looking for ways to save.

The latest American Express Spending & Saving Tracker found that rising gas prices are not slowing summer drive trips.

According to Audrey Hendley, vice president of American Express Travel, “People are passionate about travel.  They would rather find creative ways to reduce the cost of their trip rather than do without it altogether.”

8 in 10 travelers say they plan to reduce the cost of their summer vacations in various ways:

  • 1 in 3 will drive instead of fly
  • 1 in 3 will shorten the length of their stay
  • 1 in 4 will spend less on activities or excursions
  • 1 in 4 will spend more time bargain hunting for deals on airfare and accommodations
  • 2 in 10 will use travel points/rewards to pay for their trip
  • 1 in 10 will downgrade on accommodations

Respondents plan to spend an average of $4,000 per family on their trips:

  • For an average of $1,000 per person
  • That number jumps to $4,800 for young professionals, and $6400 among affluent Americans
  • Parents are also planning to spend $600 per child on summer activities for their kids

1 in 2 Americans surveyed are planning vacations, but as incomes rise, those numbers rise, too:

  • 7 in 10 affluent Americans will take a vacation
  • 8 in 10% of young professionals are planning to travel

Family vacations aren’t the only vacations people are planning this summer

  • 1 in 4 are planning couples trips
  • 1 in 10 are planning “Girlfriend Getaways” or “Mancations”
  • 1 in 10 will take “Staycations”
  • 1 in 10 will take either an adventure or educational vacation

7 in 10 plan to stay connected via internet, phone and social media while on vacation

  • Almost 7 out of 10 (65%) expect internet charges to be included in the cost of their vacation
  • 9 out of 10 plan to stay in touch with family and friends
  • 7 out of 10 will check e-mails
  • Almost 4 in 10 want to find trip-related information like recommendations and deals on restaurants
  • 3 in 10 want to stay on top of the news
  • Only 1 in 10 plans to stay in touch with work

How are you getting ready for summer travelers?

  • Are you appealing to the drive traveler?
  • Could you put a money-saving Stay and Play package together?
  • How about putting together a special couples or girlfriend package?
  • Could you offer free internet access?
  • How about putting together a special offer for people who want to stay 3-5 nights instead of a full week?
  • What else could you do?  Someone start the sharing.
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