Affluent Travelers Remain Active Travelers
(ORLANDO, FL) -- Although most travel service suppliers have watched many of their clients "trade 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 8% of U.S. households) appear to be bucking the trend.
According to our just-released 2008 Portrait of Affluent TravelersSM, fully 97% of these travelers took a domestic leisure trip during the previous 12 months (for an average of just under 5 leisure trips), and a remarkable 41% took at least one trip outside the United States (for an average of just over 2 such trips). Almost half (45%) took at least one business trip during the previous year (for an average of approximately 8 trips). Among them, almost all took at least one domestic business trip (for an average of 6), and fully one third (35%) traveled internationally on business (for an average of 6 such trips).
And although affluent travelers, too, have 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 sanguine with respect to their future travel intentions for both leisure and business as revealed below:
As revealed by the data, 9% (net) of affluent travelers expect to take more leisure trips during the next 12 months than they did during the previous year. A slightly higher percentage (13% net) of affluent business travelers report a similar intention, and both numbers augur well for future demand from this highly desirable market segment. And although affluent travelers intend to spend more on travel services in the year ahead, other insights revealed in the survey suggest they will be demanding far more for their travel dollar!