Inflation is ruining many Americans’ vacation plans


Inflation could dampen the Christmas spirit of many Americans who plan to travel for the season.

Rising gas, airfare and hotel prices are making travelers especially budget-conscious, according to a new Bankrate survey. Americans said they plan to travel shorter distances, spend fewer days out of town and engage in fewer activities that cost money. More people are also planning to drive to their destination instead of flying, while others plan to use credit cards to book trips, the personal finance website found.

Travel costs have increased significantly compared to last year. Accommodation away from home, which includes hotel stays, rose 4% in August from a year earlier, according to to the consumer price index. Gasoline rose by 26% during the same period and airfares jumped by 28%, inflation figures show.

The days between November 24 and January 1 are the busiest times for domestic travel. Airfare and hotel prices are expected to continue to rise during the holiday season, with airfares reaching some of their highest levels in five years, according to the travel booking app. Hopper.

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Domestic flights on Christmas Day average about $435 for a round-trip ticket, up 55% from last year, while airfares on Thanksgiving are around $281 round-trip, up 25% from last year, they show Hopper’s data. The average hotel stay during Thanksgiving will be $189 per night, up 13% from last year, and $218 per night during Christmas, up 32% from last year.

Holiday travel also proved to be a challenge earlier this year, especially around Memorial Day when travelers experienced it thousands of canceled or delayed flights. The cancellations came from a combination of bad weather, understaffing, and the TSA and airlines rescheduling some flights.

“I’m hoping this holiday season won’t be as chaotic, but I suspect there will be more disruption to travel due to the weather, high demand, ongoing staffing and equipment shortages,” Bankrate analyst Ted Rossman said.



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