A recent survey released by Expedia has shown that, although there have been big changes in how families make plans and what they do, family vacations are still popular.
The survey of more than 1,000 people showed that three-quarters don’t mind the hassle that often comes with a family trip. Respondents were randomly selected adults who have children under the age of 17, and they were questioned by the Family Travel Study. This study’s purpose was to find out how often families are traveling, what problems they face in planning, and what the trips mean to them.
The study was released on September 30, and the findings were certainly uplifting. Parents mostly said they travel at least once a year with their children, with 27% saying they take two trips each year and 10% saying they took three or more.
As for the reasons parents took their children on trips — many say it’s because they have had positive travel experiences from childhood and want to give the same to their own children. In fact, 70% say that their favorite memories from childhood involved a family vacation, and nine out of 10 say they think that their children need to have fun themselves.
The survey also showed the surprising amount of time it takes to simply book the average family vacation. Expedia previously said that the average American traveler completes 48 searches for airfare on 12 sites before deciding. The data also shows that on average, most Americans are spending anywhere from two to five hours trying to find just the right flight.
The difficulties when planning a trip for an entire family make planning well in advance not only advised but necessary. About 12% of survey respondents said that they booked a month in advance, but a startling 25% were planning a full calendar year in advance.
One-third of parents also reported that they let their children pick their destination. The three most popular types of destinations were beaches, theme parks, and camping sites, the latter of which are used by Americans a combined 534.9 million days per year. Following the top three destinations were all-inclusive resorts, road trips, and cities.
This survey illustrates a wonderful point: while it may be more of a hassle to coordinate, 76% of parents still believe that their kids tagging along on vacation is “more play than work.” So no matter how bad the jet lag, the tantrums, or the general travel issues are, the memories are worth it.