Why 2018 travelers prefer meaningful vacations

by | Jul 2, 2018 | All, News

Travelers prefer less but more meaningful vacations this 2018

Researchers show that while the number of vacations that travelers are taking have fallen, the amount of money they spend on their vacations remains the same

New research suggests that more travelers than ever before now prefer having meaning behind their vacations, rather than simply taking more vacations for the sake of quantity and increased time away.

In fact, this recent study shows that 30 percent of travelers are currently planning to take up to six million fewer vacations during the calendar year 2018 as compared to the calendar year 2017, which is a very sharp decrease no matter how one spins it.

In fact, this actually marks the first time that there has been negative variance in intent to travel at all, let alone one that is as sharp as 30 percent, dating back through the 12-year period in which researchers have been asking this question.

There is, however, much reason to believe that while people intend to travel much less in 2018, that the amount of money they spend on travel will hold steady into the calendar year 2019 with little variance, ultimately demonstrating that international travelers will invest more money in luxury and vacation planning, valuing the trips that they actually do end up taking more than the increased amount of trips they were likely to have taken in previous years.

What Experts Are Saying About This Research

It should be noted that the study was conducted by MMGY Global, dubbed the 2018-2019 Portrait of American Travelers study.

Here’s what researchers with that organization had to say about its findings:

“A key takeaway of this year’s Portrait of American Travelers® survey, is that travelers report taking fewer vacations but intend to spend the same as they did overall in 2017,” says Steve Cohen, senior vice president of travel insights at MMGY Global. “By spending more on average per trip in the coming year, we believe travelers will place even more significance on where they choose to go and what activities they participate in while there.”

Generational Gaps Contribute

Although the study showed that all four of the currently designated generation groups plan to travel less in 2018 than they did in 2017, there are still some differences in the findings as they pertain to the separate groups.


  • Millennials vs. Matures: While all other generations indicate that their spending will be flat or less over the coming years, Millennials indicate an increase. Millennials also report the slightest drop in vacation intentions (3%) and Matures the largest (13%). Although Matures are still the biggest spenders, Millennials are the only generation to report an increase in future travel spending this year.
  • Millennial Families: As we saw last year, Millennial families intend to spend more on vacations in the coming year than they did in the previous year. Not only are families the largest segment of the Millennial generation, each of these households spent and intends to spend significantly more on leisure travel than their single or couple counterparts. Because of this, Millennial families are an encouraging growth segment in an otherwise flat travel market.




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