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Family Vacations - US - December 2010

This report explores the family vacation in the U.S. It provides insight into why, where and how families vacation and what this means for future sales, promotional campaigns and industry innovations. Specific questions that are answered in this report include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • How have families cut costs to vacation during the recession?
  • What types of vacations do families take inside the U.S.? Outside the U.S.?
  • How does the number of children in a household affect where families vacation and the type of vacations taken?
  • Who travels when families vacation together?
  • What is the average length of a family vacation? How long do they travel each year? How does household income affect the length of these trips?
  • What states do families visit the most? The least?
  • What foreign countries do families visit the most? The least?
  • Do families take advantage of babysitting or nanny services when they vacation?
  • How do families research the vacations they take? Which are the most popular websites for that research?
  • Why do families vacation each year? What do families get out of their vacation? How do vacations lead to long-term bonding once the vacation is over?
  • What holidays or family occasions are most important for families to travel?
  • What airlines are most preferred by respondents who are traveling with children?

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Table of contents

  1. Scope and Themes

    • What you need to know
      • Data sources
        • Consumer survey data
          • Advertising creative
            • Abbreviations and terms
              • Abbreviations
                • Terms
                • Executive Summary

                  • Respondents most likely to travel with spouse or partner than whole family
                    • Wealth does not necessarily mean families vacation longer than a week
                      • Family travelers opting to save money by driving instead of flying
                        • Onsite cooking trending as a cost saver, especially for wealthy
                          • Forming connections with family is primary reason why travel matters
                            • Foreign travel limited for travelers with children
                              • Type of vacations families take depends on number of children
                                • Warm climates rule for families traveling outside U.S.
                                  • Florida, California top domestic destinations for families
                                    • Babysitting needs to be accessible, affordable to make impact
                                    • Insights and Opportunities

                                      • Create family sections on airplanes or family wings in hotels
                                        • States, municipalities can market roadside attractions to families
                                          • Operators can target families by concentrating on specific activities
                                          • Inspire Insights

                                              • Trend: “Alpha Moms”
                                                • Trend: “I Travel, Therefore I Am”
                                                • Market Drivers

                                                  • Lowest airfares originate in destinations typical of family vacations
                                                    • Figure 1: Highest and lowest U.S. domestic average itinerary fares, Q2 2010 *
                                                  • U.S. domestic leisure travel expected to increase through 2013
                                                    • Figure 2: Number of domestic person-trips for leisure, 2006-13
                                                  • Travel volume for domestic summer trips returning to 2007 peak
                                                    • Figure 3: Number of summer (June, July, August) leisure travel person-trips, 2001-10
                                                  • Airfare starting to climb back up
                                                    • Figure 4: Average domestic Q2 airfares, 2000-10 *
                                                    • Figure 5: Average domestic quarterly airfares, 2000-10 *
                                                • Innovation and Innovators

                                                  • Omni kids program tailors accommodations to mimic kids’ bedrooms
                                                    • Boutique hotels attract families by offering full-size kitchens
                                                      • Travel operators tweak family marketing
                                                      • Marketing Strategies

                                                        • Strategy: Family vacations create memories for life
                                                          • Emphasizing family values through creating lasting memories
                                                            • Figure 6: Cruisecenter direct mail ad, October 2010
                                                          • Freezing emotional moments as if capturing them forever
                                                            • Figure 7: New Mexico Tourism ad, 2010
                                                          • Showing memories as images from a photo album
                                                            • Figure 8: AAA Travel direct mail ad, April 2010
                                                          • Tradition matters, not necessarily nostalgia
                                                            • Figure 9: Alabama Tourism ad, 2010
                                                          • Strategy: Mom and dad need to have fun, too
                                                            • Letting dad “bang on the drum” is good for everybody
                                                              • Figure 10: Carnival Cruises ad, 2010
                                                            • Showcasing amenities that appeal to mom and dad
                                                              • Figure 11: Club Med direct mail ad, June 2010
                                                            • Strategy: Togetherness can be an adventure
                                                              • Pushing the endurance of family through adventuresome activities
                                                                • Figure 12: Royal Caribbean International direct mail ad, October 2010
                                                              • Enjoying the exotic for the first time accompanied by family
                                                                • Figure 13: Disney Vacations eBrochure, September 2010
                                                              • Adventure can also translate into delving into nature
                                                                • Figure 14: Missouri Tourism ad, 2010
                                                              • Adventure is also educational
                                                                • Figure 15: Illinois Tourism ad, 2010
                                                              • Strategy: Families can create vacations out of circumstance
                                                                • Figure 16: Family Vacation Critic email ad, September 2010
                                                            • Who Travels Together On Family Vacations

                                                              • Key points
                                                                  • Figure 17: Family members who travel on vacation, by gender, September 2010
                                                                  • Figure 18: Family members who travel on vacation, by age, September 2010
                                                                • Spousal travel is highest among households earning most
                                                                  • Figure 19: Family members who travel on vacation, by household income, September 2010
                                                              • Babysitting Services Used On Vacation

                                                                • Key points
                                                                  • Majority of respondents not spending on babysitters
                                                                    • Figure 20: Babysitting sevices used on vacations, by gender, September 2010
                                                                  • Respondents aged 25-34 most likely to take advantage of babysitting
                                                                    • Figure 21: Babysitting sevices used on vacations, by age, September 2010
                                                                  • Household income not influencing babysitting; availability may be a factor
                                                                    • Figure 22: Babysitting sevices used on vacations, by household income, September 2010
                                                                • Average Length of Family Vacations

                                                                  • Key points
                                                                    • Majority of respondents traveling with families for a single week
                                                                      • Figure 23: Length of family vacation, by gender, September 2010
                                                                    • Respondents 55-64 most likely to vacation with family for a week
                                                                      • Figure 24: Length of family vacation, by age, September 2010
                                                                    • Lower, middle incomes may need to travel more, even if at shorter intervals
                                                                      • Figure 25: Length of family vacation, by household income, September 2010
                                                                  • Ways Families Cut Costs When Vacationing

                                                                    • Key points
                                                                      • Respondents cutting down on costs primarily by driving instead of flying
                                                                          • Figure 26: Ways families cut costs when vacationing, by gender, September 2010
                                                                        • Youngest respondents most likely to ditch air travel for driving
                                                                          • Figure 27: Ways families cut costs when vacationing, by age, September 2010
                                                                        • As household income rises, respondents open to cook more on site
                                                                            • Figure 28: Ways families cut costs when vacationing, by household income, September 2010
                                                                        • Attitudes about Family Vacationing

                                                                          • Key points
                                                                            • Majority of respondents say vacationing with family forms bonds
                                                                              • Figure 29: Attitudes about family vacationing, by gender, September 2010
                                                                            • Parents of teenagers are most likely to see vacations as creating bonds
                                                                                • Figure 30: Attitudes about family vacationing, by age, September 2010
                                                                              • Lowest-earning households most concerned about kid-friendly hotels
                                                                                • Figure 31: Attitudes about family vacationing, by household income, September 2010
                                                                            • Reasons Why Families Vacation

                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                • One third of respondents travel with family habitually outside holidays
                                                                                  • Figure 32: Reasons why families vacation, by gender, September 2010
                                                                                • Seniors 65+ and those aged 35-44 most likely to make routine family visits
                                                                                  • Figure 33: Reasons why families vacation, by age, September 2010
                                                                              • Ways Families Research Vacations

                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                  • Family, friends matter at same rate as operator websites, travel websites
                                                                                      • Figure 34: Tools used to research family vacations, by gender, September 2010
                                                                                    • Family travel websites matter most to respondents aged 35-44
                                                                                      • Figure 35: Tools used to research family vacations, by age, September 2010
                                                                                    • Households earning $100K+ most online, least likely to listen to friends
                                                                                      • Figure 36: Tools used to research family vacations, by household income, September 2010
                                                                                  • Websites Used For Family Travel Research

                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                      • Respondents with children prefer Expedia.com to research travel
                                                                                        • Figure 37: Travel websites used over the past seven days, by households with one or more children and households with no children April-June 2010
                                                                                    • Foreign Travel and Family Vacations

                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                        • Respondents with children take an average of two foreign trips
                                                                                          • Figure 38: Round-trip foreign trips taken over the last three years April-June 2010
                                                                                      • Types of Family Vacations Taken In U.S. and Abroad

                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                          • Visiting friends, relatives top cited type of domestic destination
                                                                                            • Figure 39: Vacations taken within the U.S. in past 12 months, by number of children in household, September 2010
                                                                                          • Families with multiple children travel outside the U.S. primarily via cruises
                                                                                            • Figure 40: Vacations taken outside the U.S. in past 12 months, by number of children in household, September 2010
                                                                                        • Where Families Travel Outside U.S.

                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                            • Respondents with families staying closer to home but in warm climate
                                                                                              • Figure 41: Round-trip foreign trips taken over the last three years April-June 2010
                                                                                          • States Families Visit On Vacation

                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                              • Florida, California top destinations for family vacations
                                                                                                  • Figure 42: Primary state visited over last 12 months (one way) April-June 2010
                                                                                              • How Families Travel Within U.S.

                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                  • Respondents with children most likely to travel by car, then plane
                                                                                                    • Figure 43: How respondents traveled domestically over the last 12 months (one way), April-June 2010
                                                                                                • Airlines Families Use to Fly Domestically

                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                    • Southwest Airlines favored by respondents with children
                                                                                                        • Figure 44: Airlines used by respondents who traveled domestically over the last 12 months (one way), April-June 2010
                                                                                                    • Race and Hispanic Origin

                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                        • Asian respondents most likely to travel with young children, seniors
                                                                                                            • Figure 45: Family members who travel on vacation, by race and hispanic origin, September 2010
                                                                                                          • Hispanic respondents slightly more likely to use babysitting services
                                                                                                            • Figure 46: Babysitting sevices used on vacations, by race and hispanic origin, September 2010
                                                                                                          • Black respondents most likely to give up flying in order to save money
                                                                                                            • Figure 47: Ways families cut costs when vacationing, by race and Hispanic origin, September 2010
                                                                                                          • Hispanics most likely to perceive traveling as a way to bond with family
                                                                                                            • Figure 48: Attitudes about family vacationing, by race and hispanic origin, September 2010
                                                                                                          • Blacks, Hispanics most likely to travel for family reunions
                                                                                                            • Figure 49: Reasons why families vacation, by race and hispanic origin, September 2010
                                                                                                          • Black, Hispanic respondents most likely to use online research
                                                                                                            • Figure 50: Tools used to research family vacations, by Race and Hispanic origin, September 2010
                                                                                                          • White respondents taking week vacations; blacks, Hispanics taking weekend trips
                                                                                                            • Figure 51: Length of family vacation, by race and Hispanic origin, September 2010
                                                                                                        • Cluster Analysis

                                                                                                            • Bunkers
                                                                                                              • Demographics
                                                                                                                • Characteristics
                                                                                                                  • Opportunity
                                                                                                                    • Roadsters
                                                                                                                      • Demographics
                                                                                                                        • Characteristics
                                                                                                                          • Opportunity
                                                                                                                            • Easy Riders
                                                                                                                              • Demographics
                                                                                                                                • Characteristics
                                                                                                                                  • Opportunity
                                                                                                                                    • Cluster characteristics
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 52: Family vacation clusters, September 2010
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 53: Ways consumers saved money, by family vacation clusters, September 2010
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 54: Attitudes toward family vacations, by family vacation clusters, September 2010
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 55: Family events that make people vacation over the last 12 months, by family vacation clusters, September 2010
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 56: Tools to research family vacations, by family vacation clusters, September 2010
                                                                                                                                    • Cluster demographics
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 57: Family vacation clusters, by gender, September 2010
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 58: Family vacation clusters, by age group, September 2010
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 59: Family vacation clusters, by household income, September 2010
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 60: Family vacation clusters, by race, September 2010
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 61: Family vacation clusters, by Hispanic origin, September 2010
                                                                                                                                    • Cluster methodology
                                                                                                                                    • Appendix—Other Useful Consumer Tables

                                                                                                                                      • Reasons why families vacation and household income
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 62: Reasons why families vacation, by household income, September 2010
                                                                                                                                    • Appendix: Trade Associations

                                                                                                                                      Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                      • AAA
                                                                                                                                      • Air Transport Association of America Inc., The
                                                                                                                                      • AirTran Holdings Inc.
                                                                                                                                      • American Bus Association
                                                                                                                                      • American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA)
                                                                                                                                      • American Society of Travel Agents
                                                                                                                                      • AMR Corporation (American Airlines)
                                                                                                                                      • Carnival Corporation
                                                                                                                                      • Club Méditerranée S.A.
                                                                                                                                      • Continental Airlines Inc.
                                                                                                                                      • Delta Air Lines, Inc.
                                                                                                                                      • Disney Cruise Vacations
                                                                                                                                      • Expedia Inc.
                                                                                                                                      • Frontier Airlines Inc.
                                                                                                                                      • Hilton Hotels Corporation
                                                                                                                                      • Interactive Travel Services Association
                                                                                                                                      • InterContinental Hotels Group PLC
                                                                                                                                      • International Air Transport Association
                                                                                                                                      • International Trade Administration
                                                                                                                                      • JetBlue Airways Corporation
                                                                                                                                      • Lonely Planet Publications
                                                                                                                                      • National Tour Association (NTA)
                                                                                                                                      • Nickelodeon Movies
                                                                                                                                      • Northwest Airlines Corporation
                                                                                                                                      • Office of Travel and Tourism Industries
                                                                                                                                      • Orbitz Inc.
                                                                                                                                      • Priceline.com Incorporated
                                                                                                                                      • Receptive Services Association (RSA)
                                                                                                                                      • Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.
                                                                                                                                      • Southwest Airlines Co.
                                                                                                                                      • Spirit Airlines Inc.
                                                                                                                                      • The Bureau of Transportation Statistics
                                                                                                                                      • The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C.
                                                                                                                                      • The United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA)
                                                                                                                                      • Travelocity.com L.P.
                                                                                                                                      • Travelzoo (Europe) Ltd
                                                                                                                                      • TripAdvisor LLC
                                                                                                                                      • UAL Corporation (United Airlines)
                                                                                                                                      • Universal Studios Inc.
                                                                                                                                      • US Airways Group Inc.
                                                                                                                                      • US Department of Commerce
                                                                                                                                      • Walt Disney Company, The

                                                                                                                                      Family Vacations - US - December 2010

                                                                                                                                      £3,174.67 (Excl.Tax)