If you were forced to give up either travel or sex, which one would you choose? As a recent survey from whole-trip travel insurance company Faye reveals, for many people, travel is the true “love affair” in their lives. In fact, 38 percent of Americans said they would choose to give up sex, rather than giving up travel.
As Lauren Gumport, VP of communications and brand strategy at Faye explains, these numbers really shouldn’t be all that surprising. Travel is an essential part of many Americans’ lives — and even when rising costs can make it more stressful or difficult given the current economic environment, it remains a top priority.
What Makes Travel So Important?
The Faye survey was conducted shortly before the 2022 holiday travel season — a time when many Americans choose to travel to visit family and friends. In fact, the survey revealed that 84 percent of Americans planned to travel for Christmas, while 58 percent would be traveling for New Year’s Eve.
To Gumport, these results are hardly surprising.
“During the holidays, travel becomes a way to strengthen our connections with friends and family. But even outside of the holiday season, travel is important. It offers a chance to relax and destress. It provides an opportunity to create lasting memories that are much more meaningful than purchasing physical goods. The experiences that come with exploring new destinations are what make it such a high priority for so many. And as COVID-19 limited travel for so many, we’re seeing people increasingly aware of just how much these experiences matter.”
These sentiments are backed up by a study from the U.S. Travel Association, which found that people who used all or most of their time off for travel were significantly happier with their jobs, personal relationships and physical health than those who used little or none of their time off for travel.
Americans Are Willing to Spend
Another takeaway from Faye’s survey that highlights just how much Americans love to travel comes from the amount that people are willing to spend for their trips. “Travel spend is clearly a priority for many Americans, with 40 percent spending between $5,000 to $8,000 on their international trips,” Gumport notes.
“Thirty-four percent said they spend between $2,000 and $5,000, while 18 percent spend $8,000 to $10,000. Even as costs are increasing, people view travel as a worthwhile investment, and an essential part of their life. It’s a financial priority — not an afterthought.”
Clearly, even though there are aspects of going on a trip that travelers don’t enjoy (from rising prices to crowded airports), the benefits of travel generally outweigh potential drawbacks. From feeling emotionally rejuvenated to discovering new cultures, Americans view travel as a worthwhile investment.
Even With Pesky Annoyances, Americans Want to Travel
When asked about the worst parts of travel, 39 percent of Faye’s survey-takers cited hidden fees, while 37 percent complained of expensive flight tickets. In addition, 73 percent of those surveyed were worried that the current economic climate would limit opportunities for travel in 2023.
So, how to reconcile rising travel prices with Americans’ love of travel? As Gumport explains, the situation doesn’t have to be as dire as so many of those surveyed fear.
“You’ll obviously benefit the most from your travels when you go on trips that are meaningful and enjoyable for you,” she says. “But when prices are going up, you may need to make some changes so you can keep your budget in check. Some of the most popular strategies our survey found included staying with friends or family, traveling during off-peak times, avoiding eating out, packing light and visiting less well-known destinations..”
Where Will Your Travels Take You?
Even if you’re not part of the group that would be willing to give up sex for travel, chances are still high that you’re planning on taking some sort of trip this year. Whether that means exploring a new corner of the globe or visiting family members we haven’t seen in a while, it’s worth making travel a priority!
As Faye’s survey reveals, you’ll hardly be alone as part of Americans’ love affair with travel as you hit the road or the skies this year.