Travel Trends 2002-2003: Winter Family Travel - My Family Travels

Trends Report, October 2002. Flying, cruising, hitting the road, and traveling with pets: discover what was cool for families in a winter past.

Numbers are in from various travel pollsters, predicting what your family has probably planned: many will see family… some will travel… most will travel closer to home.

Family is Hot

A survey conducted by the Flight Plan for America campaign "confirmed an ever-increasing trend toward trips to visit family and friends" with a 25% increase in the number of family trips taken by respondents.

Short Flights are Back

Maritz Research found that of the 28% of adults planning to travel over the Christmas-New Years period, 41% (up from last year's 35%) will be flying. Shorter flights are in, probably because they make for less-costly vacations.'s survey of Winter 2002 Holiday Travel Trends found that Central America, South America and the Caribbean ran second to North American destinations in air travel bookings. After New York City and Denver, the top two US fly-in destinations, international destinations showing the most increase in ticket sales were Lima, Peru; San Salvador, El Salvador; Kingston, Jamaica; Buenos Aires, Argentina; Aruba and Tortola, BVI. Mexico remained a very popular destination.

According to November's Forrester Research WholeView Technographics report, nearly 25% of leisure travelers ventured beyond the mainland US in the past year, again, mostly to destinations close to home. Both the destinations visited in 2001 and intended future destinations of those polled (49% of whom described themselves as "avid" travelers) follow this trend. In order of popularity, they are: Canada, Caribbean, Mexico, Western Europe, Hawaii, Great Britain/Ireland, Asia, Eastern Europe, Africa and "other."

Crusing's Hot
How about cruising, a vacation option that's been in the news because of recent outbreaks of a Norwalk-virus like intestinal disease? Travel Weekly's December survey of nearly one thousand cruise agents found that although 50% had heard from concerned clients, only 38% found cruise bookings negatively affected by all the publicity.

Pets are Hot

And on another (four-legged) front, the Laguna Cliffs Marriott Resort in Dana Point, California, "a preferred vacation spot for the beloved family pet" to quote their news release, reports a 33% increase for the third quarter of 2002 of guests traveling with pets.

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