Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Travel Leaders' 2012 Consumer Survey Reveals: American Travelers' "Tipping Point" on Cost of Airfare

As airlines begin to charge travelers and families extra if they would like to sit together on a flight, Travel Leaders Group's latest survey reveals Americans' "tipping point" on the cost of domestic and international airline tickets. For 81.5% of consumers polled nationwide, their tipping point for a domestic airline ticket is somewhere between $200 and $500; and for 42.9% of those polled, their tipping point for an international ticket is between $1,000 and $1,500 dollars. Also, 83.1% indicate that they will spend the same or more on leisure trips in 2012 as compared to last year.  This survey was conducted by Travel Leaders Group from April 4 to May 16, 2012, and includes responses from 855 consumers throughout the U.S.

Domestic and International Airfare Tipping Points:

  • When asked "the maximum you're willing to pay to fly to your domestic destination" the top two individual responses were: "Up to $400"per ticket (33.1%) and "Up to $500" (24.2%).  When looking at combined responses, 81.5% of consumers polled nationwide say their domestic airfare tipping point is between $200 and $500, while 18.5% of those polled indicate their tipping point is up to $600 or more.
  • When asked "What could potentially change that?" with regard to domestic airfare, the top responses were: Funeral (65.5%), Medical needs (44.6%), and Wedding (33.2%).
  • When asked "the maximum you're willing to pay to fly to your international destination" the top two individual responses were: "Up to $1,000" (16.3%) and "Up to $1,200" (10.4%).  When looking at aggregated responses, 42.9% would pay between $1,000 and 1,500, while 8% of those polled indicate that they would pay up to $2,000 or more for an international airline ticket.
Leisure Travel in 2012:
  • An overwhelming majority (93.6%) of those polled say they will take at least one leisure trip in 2012.  In fact, of that group, over 71% have already taken one leisure trip this year and nearly 28% have taken two or more trips so far this year.
  • When asked "Is the total number of leisure trips you anticipate taking in 2012 more, the same or less than last year?" o ver 92% of those polled indicate they will take the same or more trips this year as in 2011.  Only 8% indicate they will take fewer trips.
  • When asked how much they will spend on leisure travel this year, 83.1% of those polled say they will spend the same or more on leisure travel in 2012 than they did last year.  Only 17% indicate they will spend less on leisure travel this year.
Traveling Away from Home:  Travel Leaders Group asked, "For your leisure trip(s) did you or will you ..." (Participants could choose all that apply, so total will not equal 100%.)

Travel within the U.S. and farther than a bordering state
Travel internationally (Canada, Mexico and/or Caribbean)
Travel within your home state
Travel internationally (other than Canada, Mexico and Caribbean)
Travel to a bordering state

Land or Cruise: When asked whether participants' leisure trips were land-based, cruise-only or a combination of both, the results indicate:

Land-based, only.
Cruise, only.
Both land-based and cruise vacations.