Is leisure travel your priority this summer?

Some one I read in the past 24 hours wrote we are a fortunate minority in this community to be able to travel frequently. I would include a link, but honestly, it was from one of maybe 50 articles I read yesterday and I don’t remember where I read the words.

For me, I was born to a life of travel as a military brat. 13 schools in California, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Virginia and Germany before turning 16 years of age set me on the road of life and life on the road at an early age, literally.

This summer looks to be a nice summer of travel for our family. I have booked over 30 hotel nights in the past two weeks for travel over the next two months. I’ll be in Disneyworld in ten days and Disneyland next month. Disneyland will be a family adventure with our now retired military family unit.

Disney Paradise Pier

Four years anticipating a big spend with Club Carlson points is happening with our second trip to London within one year. Thanksgiving was six nights and 170,000 Club Carlson points burned to save $2,000 on hotel rates. This summer we will have ten nights on Club Carlson points, burning another 310,000 points for London and Copenhagen to save around $3,000 on hotel rates. Earning those points was possible for about $1,000 in hotel stays with the high bonus points opportunities in Club Carlson since 2011.

Travel as the Money Pit 

The Money Pit is a phrase often used to refer to expenses of owning a house and property. Travel is the upper market consumer money pit. At least what you invest in a home is an investment in your everyday lifestyle you can continue to get great use from for months and years. Travel tends to be a money pit where only memories and some photos and souvenirs remain, long after the money spent is gone.

That is why travel needs to be a good experience. Planning helps make that happen and cut the expenses of travel without sacrificing the experiences. The primary purpose of Loyalty Traveler is to share opportunities to reduce the cost of travel by using loyalty programs wisely and knowing when low airfares are available for international travel. Save 25% on your next four trips and your 5th trip is free.

Travel Pulse –  Americans Making Leisure Travel A Priority this Summer

D.K. Shifflet & Associates surveyed 8,600 Americans last month about summer travel plans. Basic finding is Americans plan to spend more and travel more in summer 2015. Older people plan to increase their leisure travel spend the most and add more travel days this summer than younger travelers. This trend holds true for each generational age cohort of Americans from 70 years and older to millennials.

1. Traditionalists 70 and older

2. Boomers 51-69

3. Gen X 35-50

4. Millennnials 18-34

“Perhaps Traditionalists intend to make the most of their final years,” said DKSA vice president Chris Klauda in a statement speculating as to why they beat out the other generations in both areas.

Smart and Final Travel Shoppers

Here is another reason I suggest for the change. Air travel is far lower this year for international travel and gasoline cost has been significantly lower this past year in the USA for domestic road trips.

You can rent an RV and drive half-way across the USA for $5 and gas with start-up companies like TransferCarUS. Blogger Travel with Grant drove a rental RV from California to Denver a couple of months ago using this service.

I am renting a car from Orlando to Knoxville, Tennessee for $55 all-in for five days on a ‘Drive out of Florida” annual car rental deal in two weeks during the period from April to early June when rental cars in Florida need to be transported around the USA for summer rental availability.

In the past two months airline ticket prices offered deals around the world from California and many other airports in the USA.

Here are some airfare deals I have blogged about on Loyalty Traveler:

San Francisco – Stockholm $599 Delta August 2015

San Francisco – Bermuda $435 July 2015

San Francisco – Cape Town South Africa $766 Delta August 2015

San Francisco – Rio de Janeiro $626 American Airlines (available today)

San Francisco – Gothenburg Sweden $641 United Airlines July 2015

San Francisco – Hong Kong $575 Korean, $687 United Airlines nonstop August 2015

Los Angeles – Santiago, Chile $619 Copa June 2015

Los Angeles – Macao, China $597 Air China August 2015

Long Beach – Anchorage, Alaska $262 JetBlue August 2015, $293 July

Bottom line for the Americans Summer 2015 Leisure Travel Intentions survey results visible for free is the younger you are, the less you plan to increase your spend on travel this summer. Still, all age groups plan to increase travel spend and travel days. It is just that older Americans plan to increase their time and spend on travel in summer 2015 more than younger Americans.

I’ll give you another explanation for why older Americans are increasing their travel spend higher than other groups. Older Americans have less need to buy other shit. I need food and travel and not much else. I have the same dishes and kitchen stuff I bought 30 years ago. My kitchen has lasted 30 years. Much of our household furniture is from the 1980s when we purchased it new. We spent more in our 20s to buy things that would last many years. We have little need to buy new things for our lifestyle.

Our baby boomer lifestyle increased travel spending for summer 2015 is not a reflection of a desire to see all we can before death. We have a much simpler explanation. No children, no grandchildren, and fewer other needs than younger people or many people our age find taking pieces of their household financial pie. Lifestyle choices mean we are left with more of our household financial pie for spending on travel.

Knock on wood for luck in good health and circumstances to keep that financial pie from getting gobbled up by other needs in the near future.

About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined in 2008.

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  1. Nope, I try to travel less during the summer to avoid all the kettles at the airport. I stick with weekend getaways during the summer.

  2. Many of my fellow first-wave baby boomers have stepped up our international travel because it’s fair to say we don’t expect to still be walking the cobblestoned streets of Europe in our 90s. Go when the going’s good, we say. Thanks to miles and points, many of us have traveled more extensively than we would have thought financially possible, so thanks, Ric, for all the good tips.

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