Higher earners, millennials lead charge back to travel

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Luxury traveler [Credit: Maridav/Shutterstock.com]
Traveler confidence is returning this year, especially among higher earners and millennials, according to a joint study from Accenture and Tripadvisor. Photo Credit: Maridav/Shutterstock.com

Traveler confidence is returning this year, especially among higher earners and millennials, according to a joint study from Accenture and Tripadvisor.

To conduct the study, the companies surveyed 1,000 U.S. respondents in early March about their travel plans in 2021.

"We found that travel confidence is back -- and in a big way," the study states. "Americans are pushing out of their comfort zone and expanding their travel radius to go further, spend more and, most importantly, relax."

Related: U.S. is leading an uneven recovery at Tripadvisor

Of respondents who didn't travel at all in 2020, 61% said they were comfortable doing so in 2021. But those who did travel in 2020 were more likely to have booked a 2021 trip already (41%), compared with 13% of those who didn't travel in 2020.

Those with incomes of $100,000 or more were the most likely to travel this year. In total, 34% said they had already booked a trip for 2021, compared with 19% of the remaining population. 

Millennials were the most eager group to fly, Tripadvisor and Accenture found. In total, 58% of millennials with incomes of more than $50,000 are considering domestic air travel for their next trip, compared with 41% among other age groups. Twenty-five percent are considering international air travel, 1.8 times higher than the average among other demographic groups.

Further, 32% of high-earning millennials said they plan on increasing their travel spending this year.

Respondents were most interested in beach vacations and nature travel, the survey found, but city destinations are on the rise again, especially among younger travelers.

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