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TripAdvisor Survey Reveals Soaring Fuel Costs Won't Slow Travelers Down This Summer

Consumers Spending More Time and Money on Summer Trips in 2006

PRNewswire
NEEDHAM, Mass.
(NASDAQ:EXPE)

NEEDHAM, Mass., May 16 /PRNewswire/ -- According to a recent TripAdvisor™ survey of more than 2,300 travelers worldwide, 92 percent of travelers intend to take a vacation this summer and 54 percent plan to take at least half of their annual vacation time this summer. Twenty-eight percent of travelers intend to take more vacation time this summer than last, and 29 percent intend to spend more money on their summer vacations in 2006 than they did in 2005. Men actually intend to spend more money than women on their travels this summer.

Travelers seem eager to pull out their credit cards this summer, even at the gas pumps. Nearly 70 percent of travelers said the rising cost of fuel will not interfere with their travel plans. Americans are more concerned with gas prices than travelers from other countries, with 27 percent reporting they will take fewer trips due to fuel costs, compared with 12 percent of travelers from outside the U.S.

Alluring Activities

Coppertone is seeing green as the two most popular activities this summer, according to the panel, will be swimming and sunbathing. Visiting a museum, going to a concert, and touring a national park round out the top five most popular activities. About one quarter of all travelers, and 39 percent of U.S. respondents, intend to go to a baseball game this summer. Despite the World Cup event in Germany this summer, a mere seven percent of the overall panel and 12 percent of respondents from outside the U.S. intend to see a live soccer match this summer.

The majority of travelers intend to hit the sun, sand and city streets. Fifty-two percent of travelers plan to visit a beach destination and 49 percent plan to visit a major metropolitan area this summer. According to the panel, women are more likely than men to participate in outdoors activities, such as hiking and camping.

Nearly five percent of respondents plan to visit a nude beach this summer and men are twice as likely as women to bare all. Five percent also plan to visit "adults-only" resorts. It appears that spas are a more of a wintertime activity as 27 percent of travelers intend to visit a spa this summer compared to 55 percent from a fall TripAdvisor survey.

Desirable Destinations

More travelers are planning to go to Florida than any other destination for vacation this summer, followed by California and Las Vegas. The most popular destinations outside the U.S. are Italy, Canada and France.

If given a chance to vacation at any beach destination in the world, regardless of cost and distance, the Polynesian Islands were the top choice among travelers followed by the Hawaiian Islands and the Greek Isles.

Family Forays

Visiting the beach (67 percent) was the most popular choice for respondents taking vacation with their children, followed by going to an amusement park or theme park. Nearly 10 percent of respondents plan to travel somewhere on vacation alone this summer.

Appealing Accommodations

Hotels and resorts should be hearing a loud "cha-ching" as 71 percent of travelers plan to stay at a hotel during their vacation this summer, up a few percentage points from last year, according to the survey. Sixty-three percent of respondents are planning to leave their home country for vacation this summer.

"Travelers are living it up and not letting high fuel costs slow them down this summer," said Michele Perry, director of communications for TripAdvisor™. "Exotic island destinations may be the dream, but tried and true beach and city destinations are the reality for most travelers, who plan to use up the majority of their annual time off this summer."

 

CONTACT: Brooke Ferencsik of TripAdvisor LLC, +1-781-444-1113 x275,
brooke@tripadvisor.com

Web site: http://www.tripadvisor.com/