Inflation has not dampened travel spending | Tech US News

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TAMPA, Fla. – The price of almost everything has gone up in the past year, but that doesn’t seem to be dampening Americans’ interest in travel or spending, travel experts say.


What You Need to Know

  • Despite inflation, US travel spending is at its highest level since before the pandemic, AAA spokesman says
  • Some travelers at Tampa International Airport on Sunday said they’ve noticed ticket prices go up and are making changes to their travel plans, such as when they fly and which airports they choose, based on the best deals.
  • A report from the Expedia Group shows that November and December travel searches are up 60% over last year
  • One traveler said he delayed his holiday travel plans due to ticket prices

“Despite inflationary pressures, gas prices are high, people are still spending on travel. In fact, travel spending is at its highest level since the pandemic,” said Mark Jenkins, spokesman for the AAA Auto Club Group.

The Expedia group’s Traveler Insights report for the fourth quarter cites its Traveler Value Index study, which shows that 46% of travelers surveyed worldwide said travel is more important to them now than before the pandemic. Stephen Couture of Roanoke, Va., traveled through Tampa International Airport on Sunday. He said he is feeling like traveling more.

“Absolutely,” Couture said. “We even traveled a little during the pandemic, but over the last year we’ve been on cruises and flying again. All the planes are full. I mean, there’s not a single seat left that’s empty.”

According to the Expedia Group report, travel searches during November and December were up 60% over last year, pointing to a possibly busier holiday travel season. Diego, a traveler flying from Tampa to Chicago, said he postponed his holiday travel plans until February because of what he said were rising ticket prices.

“Like, maybe double, especially for peak periods,” Diego said of the price increases he’s noticed. “So you find deals for the non-peakers.”

Diego said airfare prices have affected his travel plans in general.

“I need to know a lot when I go. It changes my schedule, actually, the prices,” said Diego.

The Expedia Group report said that inflation and the deals that travelers can get are likely to start influencing the details of more trips.

Jenkins said when it comes to vacation travel, it’s important to book sooner rather than later to get the best prices and availability.

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