The American economy may be heading into a fiscal wall but when it comes to travel at least half the U.S. population is saying, “what wall?”
Some 50 percent of Americans have booked or plan to book travel in 2013, and a good chunk of those travelers (87%) plan to spend as much or more than they did on traveling in 2012.
These accounts come from a knowing authority on travel: The monthly survey that is conducted by American Express Spending & Saving Tracker in an effort to determine consumer spending and saving plans or intentions. American Express Travel Insiders, specially trained travel agents with in-depth destination knowledge, shared the most popular destinations for where consumers are headed this year.
Top Five International Destinations
• New Zealand
• Banff National Park, Canada
Top Five Domestic Destinations
• Seattle, Washington
• Santa Fe, New Mexico
• Nashville, Tennessee
• Denver, Colorado
• Palm Springs, California
American Express Travel Insiders also noted the hottest types of travel experiences in demand for 2013:
- Romancing the Rails – The old-school romantic feel of traveling somewhere on a luxurious locomotive has once again become intriguing to travelers. The Royal Scotsman, Orient Express, Eurostar and new Italian NTV Italo are among the incredible train experiences people are booking.
- On the Wild Side – Nature lovers often associate Safaris with Africa but that perception is changing. Travelers are going to more diverse locations to observe wildlife, such as Borneo, Indonesia to see the orangutans and the National Parks of Kanha, Bandhavgarh and Pench in India to face up to wild tigers.
- Time Travel – Travelers don’t want to just read about history, they are requesting itineraries that allow them to relive it. While some, inspired by the pomp and circumstance of Downton Abbey, seek to discover the British countryside; others are sticking closer to home to take in the historical sites of Colonial Williamsburg and Boston.
- Cycling Escapes – These increasingly popular, athletic getaways combine the benefits of a workout with the scenic vineyards of France, the pristine mountains of Colorado or other natural wonders. Although they take muscle, these trips add a luxurious introduction to these destinations, featuring stays in historical castles and palaces, Champagne luncheons, and private tours.
- Sails Up – While cruising has always been a popular winter getaway option, travelers are heading beyond the Caribbean to explore the high seas in new territories. With an 80% increase in year-over-year cruise booking to the Asia-Pacific region, New Zealand, Singapore, Japan, Australia, Vietnam, and Thailand have proved to be among the most popular with travelers.
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