Price of Gasoline to Hurt Summer Travel

The rise in gas prices will likely cut summer travel for many vacationers as well as business travelers. A recent survey by the U.S. Travel Association of 2,500 U.S. households found that over 44% said higher prices of gas would curb the number of vacations they take during the upcoming summer. Thirty-seven percent said their trips would be shorter, while some said they would shorten their trips and have fewer.

Just 19% said their business trips would be fewer because of the gas prices. However, a large percentage of business travelers said they would spend less on others things while traveling. Twenty-eight percent said they would spend less eating at restaurants and 22% said they would stay at less expensive hotels.

On Tuesday, the national average for gas was at $3.89 per gallon. It was the 18th consecutive day the price has increased. Thus far during 2012, gas prices are up 19%. They are only 5% less than in July of 2008, when the national average was $4.11 a gallon.

Gas pumps are not the only place where higher oil prices are being felt. Airlines just increased fares for the third time this year. Those increases will cause some travel to cancel all plans for vacations that require flying.

Twenty-seven percent of vacation travelers and 20% of business travelers plan to fly less during the upcoming summer because of the higher fares. Ten percent of those planning vacations also said they would change how they traveled due to airfare increases. Others said they would spend less on lodging and food to compensate for higher fuel or airfare costs.