New Harris Poll Finds 'Summer Swaps' Expected to Continue Due to Current Economic Climate

Staff Report From Georgia CEO

Wednesday, May 22nd, 2024

 Intrepid Travel, the world leader in responsible travel, today announced results of a Harris Poll of over 2,000 adults ages 18+ finding that eight in 10 U.S. respondents (84%) are planning to travel this summer, yet 66% say the economy has forced them to scale back their travel plans. Many are seeking out 'summer swaps' (74%) as prices continue to soar and travelers seek out less-trodden alternatives to popular hot spots heading into the Summer of 2024.

"TikTok popularized the idea of 'dupe' destinations and we believe the trend is here to stay," said Matt Berna, Intrepid Travel President, The Americas. "As we head into the busy summer travel season, Americans are more likely to choose an alternative, less-expensive trip due to increasing economic pressures. We are excited to help them experience the road less traveled."

The new survey also found nearly two in three (64%) of U.S. respondents plan to take a trip with family and about 42% will seek a new destination, while 40% will take a repeat vacation. Notably, 75% of respondents feel most comfortable traveling with others their own age.

Additionally, when it comes to personal, vacation, or leisure travel, most U.S. adults (54%) plan to travel the same this summer (2024) as they did last summer (2023), which was one of the busiest for travel in recent years. Specifically, young adults (ages 18-44 are more likely to plan to travel more this summer (39% 18-34, 42% 35-44, vs. 21-27% ages 45+) and are finding creative ways to make it happen on lower budgets opting for 'summer swap' destinations.

Sought After 'Summer Swaps' for 2024
Over half of Americans planning to travel this summer plan to do so within the United States (67%). Try Trinity AlpsCalifornia's second largest wilderness area, over Yosemite.

While Intrepid reports a 25% interest decline for classic Southern European summer destinations like Italy and FranceSouth America is soaring in 2024. Lake Atitlan in Guatemala is a great alternative, referred to as 'The Lake Como of Latin America.'

If you do want to go to Europe – consider seeking out lesser visited gems without peak season crowds like; Kekova, Turkey over Greek Islands or Albania over Croatia.

Despite A.I.'s rapidly growing popularity, U.S. respondents continue to rely primarily on recommendations from friends and family (61%) when choosing their travel destinations. However, over half of respondents (54%) agree that generative A.I. can be a game changer for vacation planning in the future, with one in four (25%) already having used A.I.

"While AI can make parts of the travel experience more efficient, it will never replace real life experiences that only one human can share with another. We are confident that Intrepid Travel's impact on the global travel experience is here to stay," added Berna.

For Reference: Survey Methodology
This survey was conducted online within the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of Intrepid Travel from April 11-15, 2024 among 2,088 U.S. adults ages 18+, of whom 1,736 are traveling this summer (2024). The sampling precision of Harris online polls is measured by using a Bayesian credible interval. For this study, the total sample data is accurate to within +/- 2.5 percentage points using a 95% confidence level.