African-Americans traveling more, but some worried about racial profiling

|
Photo Credit: XiXinXing/Shutterstock

African-Americans are traveling more, thanks to an increase in disposable income and the development of more black cultural and historical sites, according to a Mandala Research survey.

Still, 15% said a fear of racial profiling will impact their decision to travel in the next 12 months. That's higher than fear of airport hassles (13%) or terrorism (11%).

The study also indicated that feeling welcome and knowing there will be other African-Americans at their destination is important to black travelers, with 13% saying they "sometimes fear for my safety traveling to places where there are not a lot of other African-Americans."

The study is a follow-up to Mandala's first look at the African-American traveler, published in 2011.

Since then, spending by African-American travelers has increased from $48 billion to $63 billion. 

Mandala said the increase reflects more than inflation, which alone would have brought the number to just $55 billion.

"Clearly, greater disposable income available to African-Americans over this period has resulted in higher travel spending," the study said.

"We believe additional spending, however, has also been spurred by developments that occurred during and since the Obama administration. The visibility of an African-American president elevated a sense of pride in African-American heritage and spurred the establishment of significant historical and cultural organizations devoted to the African-American experience in the U.S."

The widely promoted National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C., also likely contributed to a rise in African-American travel, the study said. Publicity around the 50th anniversary of the King Center and other African-American heritage and cultural sites "demonstrated they are welcoming of African-American travelers."

The top reasons African-Americans cited as negatively impacting their ability to take a leisure trip were being too busy (28%), financial concerns (25%) and concern about the economy (21%).

The survey of 1,018 African-American travelers was conducted online and has a 3% margin of error.

Comments
JDS Travel News JDS Viewpoints JDS Africa/MI