Georgians have begun making their travel plans for the holiday season. According to a new AAA Travel survey, nearly half (46%) of residents book their holiday trips by the end of October.
“Time is of the essence for people who plan to take a flight this holiday season,” said Debbie Haas, Vice President of Travel for AAA – The Auto Club Group. “As we get closer to the holidays, airfares often rise as availability shrinks. We recommend you book by Halloween, for the best chance of finding the flight you want at a favorable rate.”
AAA will release its full Thanksgiving Travel Forecast November 9th.
“We’ve recently seen numerous flight delays and cancellations, and even more are possible during the holidays,” Haas continued. “So if you’re planning a flight, you may want to consider travel insurance. If your flight is cancelled, there are various policies that would help offset unexpected expenses like a hotel, transportation and food. You may also receive compensation for lost luggage, or if your flight is delayed for as little as 3 hours.”
VACCINE PROVIDING CONFIDENCE FOR HOLIDAY TRAVELERS
Two-in-five (42%) Georgians plan to take a vacation of 3 days or more during the 2021 holiday season. Meanwhile, fifteen percent have not yet decided. A little over one third (37%) of Georgians without holiday travel plans are staying home for fear of contracting or spreading COVID-19.
Compared to last year, when a vaccine wasn’t available, 30% of Georgians are more comfortable traveling this holiday season. Meanwhile, forty-one percent feel the same as last year.
Of the 74% of Georgians who are fully or partially vaccinated:
- 69% are confident the vaccine will protect them from contracting COVID-19 while traveling
- 68% are confident in the long-term effectiveness of the vaccine
QUARTERLY TRAVEL CONFIDENCE
|Do you feel comfortable traveling?|
Traveler confidence took a step back this quarter, following a resurgence in COVID-19 cases, brought on by the Delta variant. This year, the percentage of Georgian who are comfortable traveling rebounded from 53% in Q2 to 72% in Q3, yet slipped back to 64% in our Q4 survey – fielded in September.
QUARTERLY TRAVELER CONFIDENCE BY TRIP TYPE
|Do you feel comfortable doing the following?|
|Using own vehicle for road trip||81%||82%||90%||87%|
|Staying in a hotel||52%||58%||67%||65%|
|Going to theme parks||NA||39%||55%||44%|
|Taking a commercial flight||34%||44%||52%||53%|
|Taking an ocean or river cruise||NA||NA||41%||41%|
Although traveler confidence hit a snag, enthusiasm could rebound through the end of the year. COVID-19 cases in the U.S. are trending lower again, which is what 41% of Georgians said would need to happen in order to feel more comfortable traveling.
TRAVELERS INCREASINGLY TURNING TO TRAVEL ADVISORS AND INSURANCE
“Whether you’re taking a flight, cruise or tour; travel insurance can provide the peace of mind in knowing that your trip is protected during the pandemic,” Haas said. “There are various policies that provide coverage if you contract COVID either before or during your trip. If you talk with a travel agent, they can help ensure you have the policy that is the best fit for your trip.”
Throughout the year, survey data has shown steady growth in the percentage of travelers who are more likely to purchase travel insurance because of the pandemic. Almost half of Georgians (49%) now say they are more likely to purchase travel insurance than before the pandemic began. That’s an increase from 35% in Q1.
Travel advisors are vital during the pandemic. Since restrictions and requirements can vary by destination, travel advisors help travelers navigate the various complexities, so they can make informed decisions and travel with confidence.
About the AAA Consumer Pulse™ Survey
The AAA Consumer Pulse™ Survey was conducted online among residents living in Georgia from September 15-22, 2021. A total of 400 residents completed the survey. Survey results asked of all respondents have a maximum margin of error of ± 4.9% points. Responses are weighted by age and gender to ensure reliable and accurate representation of the adult population (18+) in Georgia.
Visit the AAA Georgia Newsroom
ABOUT AAA – THE AUTO CLUB GROUP
The Auto Club Group (ACG) is the second largest AAA club in North America with more than 14 million members across 14 U.S. states, the province of Quebec and two U.S. territories. ACG and its affiliates provide members with roadside assistance, insurance products, banking and financial services, travel offerings and more. ACG belongs to the national AAA federation with more than 62 million members in the United States and Canada. AAA’s mission is to protect and advance freedom of mobility and improve traffic safety. For more information, get the AAA Mobile app, visit AAA.com, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.