Affluent Americans are ready to spend on family, luxury travel again, Amex finds — and they’re often paying with vouchers

The South Rim in Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona.

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Summer travel is again, massive time. That’s in accordance to a survey launched Tuesday by American Express Travel, the place client travel bookings have reached 95% of May 2019 ranges.

But whereas prosperous Americans are itching to get away, it is dwelling they need to depart — not each other. And they’re often paying for journeys with vouchers and credit-card factors.

The on-line Amex Trendex survey of two,000 common vacationers incomes no less than $70,000 a 12 months, performed in late June, discovered that each employees and households need to squeeze in as a lot trip time as attainable earlier than doubtless returning to workplaces and college campuses this fall. 

“Our customers are ready to spend on travel again,” mentioned Audrey Hendley, president of American Express Travel. Sixty % of respondents will take one other journey this summer time, and for 47% that can signify taking extra travel than is common proper earlier than the varsity 12 months begins.

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Many dad and mom and their children might have been cooped up collectively at dwelling for greater than a 12 months, however the majority of adults with kids (52%) will nonetheless travel as a household, in accordance to Hendley. About a 3rd, at 33%, will take a {couples} journey sans children, whereas solely 5% and 3% will travel solo or with pals, respectively.

Among causes for travel, household reunions had been No. 1 at 22%, whereas birthday and anniversary journeys got here in third and fourth at 8% every. Seeing pals was second, at 18%. Types of travel? “Parents are craving a wide variety of activities,” mentioned Hendley, pointing to seaside or tropical locations (45%), cities (28%), outside journey journeys (24%), and “family” locations corresponding to Disney resorts (22%).  

“We’re seeing that parents want to make the most of the summer,” she added, noting that two-thirds of oldsters, or 66%, need to make a journey within the subsequent month.

“This is something I can certainly relate to, as well,” Hendley mentioned. “My daughter is in university and my son’s schedule will pick up with school and extracurricular activities in the fall, so we’re hoping to take one last family vacation before our lives get even busier.”

It’s not simply amount of time collectively vacationers are eager about, both — it is high quality, too. 

“After spending more time at home than ever before last year, there is a strong desire from people to make up for lost time and explore the world through travel again,” Hendley mentioned.

More than half, or 57%, of vacationers informed Amex in one other survey performed in June that they are prepared to spend extra on a “once-in-a-lifetime” trip that they had been earlier than the pandemic. In addition, almost half are extra doubtless now to e-book a lodge or resort providing luxury experiences and facilities.

Survey members estimated they will spend a median $4,790 on luxury travel between now and 2022, and 30% suppose they will shell out greater than $10,000, in accordance to Hendley.

How do aspiring vacationers plan to pay for all this? It’s not simply money and credit score anymore. Welcome to the post-pandemic world of journey vouchers and travel credit, in addition to saved-up bank card factors.

During the pandemic, many customers had been saving up their bank card factors for future travel,” Hendley said. “Additionally, with the vast majority of journeys canceled or postponed final 12 months, we’re seeing a brand new type of foreign money emerge in travel — the usage of e-credits and travel vouchers.

“People are looking to use these credits and vouchers as they start to plan and book their next trip,” she added. In response, Amex Travel has debuted new performance at its web site that helps cardmembers monitor the credit they’ve, alongside with expiration date data.

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