Allianz Global Assistance released their Allianz Travel Insurance Vacation Confidence Index on July 5, revealing that Americans are estimated to spend more than $100 billion of spending on summer vacations this summer. Allianz defined a vacation as a "leisure trip of at least a week to a place that is 100 miles or more from home." The Vacation Confidence Index measures Americans' confidence in their ability to take a summer vacation, showing that the projected summer spending for this year is $101.1 billion, compared to 2016's $89.9 billion, a 12.5 percent increase from 2016. This is the first time Americans will spend more than $100 billion on summer vacations.
“Americans are feeling better about the economy and have loosened their purse strings for summer 2017,” says Daniel Durazo, director of communications at Allianz Global Assistance USA. “We’re happy to see that for first time in the eight year history of the Vacation Confidence Index, vacation spending will hit an impressive $100 billion. This new milestone is great news for the travel industry.”
This is the second consecutive year that summer travel spending has increased. In 2015, Americans spent an average of $1,621 on summer vacations; in 2016, Americans spent $1,798. In 2017, Americans will spend an average of $1,978. This shows an 11 percent increase from 2015 to 2016, and a 10 percent increase from 2016 to 2017. The Vacation Confidence Index also disclosed that 9% have already taken a vacation, more than 44 percent are positive they will take a vacation this summer, and 51% of Americans know they will take a vacation sometime during the year. 40 percent of Americans aren't sure they'll take a vacation this year at all.
Although the amount of Americans taking vacations is higher, the Vacation Confidence Index revealed that some Americans' don't think that taking an annual vacation is as significant as it used to be in the past. Only 59% of Americans answered that taking an annual vacation is either very significant or somewhat significant to them, and that 23% don't care about annual vacations. This percentage is down 6 percentage points from 2016. The Vacation Deficit remained close to the same from 2016, with 21% answering that vacations are important, but they aren't sure they'll be able to take a vacation this year. The Vacation Deficit in 2015 was at 19%, and 20% in 2016. Differing ages in responses to this survey were also taken into account, with Generation Xers (ages 35-54) spending the most on vacations ($2,628), with Baby Boomers (ages 55+) taking second ($1,856), and millennials (ages 18-34) spending on average only $1,373.
The Vacation Confidence Index has been running annually since 2010 by Ipsos Public Affairs on behalf of Allianz Global Assistance USA. Allianz Global Assistance offers travel insurance through many outlets, including online travel agencies, travel suppliers, most major U.S. airlines, and travel agents.
“With the vacation spend breaking $100 billion, travel insurance is a must-have,” says Durazo. “The right travel insurance policy can protect a consumer's pre-paid travel expenses when they have to cancel their trip due to certain unexpected situations, such as a covered illness or injury, and it may also provide reimbursements for things like medical emergencies, delayed travel, and lost or delayed baggage."