Friday, September 01, 2006

Expanding Boundaries for Family Getaways

Family travel is on the rise this summer, according to an American Express travel agent poll, as vacations are expanding beyond the traditional getaways to include newer, broader, and more active and meaningful travel plans. Agents point out that top motivators for family travel include the desire to introduce children to different cultures, customs, and lifestyles, as well as to experience new things together and create lasting memories.

Respondents maintain that families increasingly are drawn to active and experience-driven travel plans. Poll results show that agents are booking more out door, adventure family vacations (62%) and international trips (57%). Some 49% of travel agents polled say cruising is a growing trend in family travel as well. Moreover, family reunions are on the rise, declare 41% of agents. Indeed, family members are pairing up to travel: 64% of agents are seeing more mother-daughter getaways, while 36% note an in crease in father-son tandems. Almost two-thirds of agents indicate that spa getaways make up most mother-daughter vacations; fathers and sons usually choose active vacations, such as hunting, biking, hiking, or fishing.

Within the U.S., Orlando ranks as the top destination. New York and Miami are second and third, respectively. Las Vegas and Hawaii round out the top five.

When agents were asked to name the most popular international destinations for families, London, Rome, and Paris took the top three spots. Other popular international destinations include Cancun, Mexico; Nassau in the Bahamas; and San Jose, Costa Rica.

Source: USA Today Magazine, Aug2006

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