According to the results of a new survey conducted by online travel marketplace Skyscanner, more than one-quarter of Americans (26 percent) felt that taking a vacation was this year’s biggest highlight.
Nearly half of survey participants (49 percent) also said that going on vacation was the most significant leisure activity during 2021, ranking it higher than going to bars and restaurants (44 percent), reentering the dating scene (40 percent), and attending events or live concerts (37 percent).
Seventy-five percent of respondents reported that they have more confidence about traveling in 2022 because of widespread COVID-19 vaccinations. And, partially because over 60 percent of the U.S. population is now fully vaccinated (according to the Mayo Clinic’s tracker) the world has begun opening international borders to American visitors.
The emergence of the Omicron variant has caused some countries to tighten travel restrictions, or reimplement quarantine and testing measures for foreign visitors. But, Skyscanner’s study found that the most determined of American travelers (seven percent) wouldn’t be deterred by any length of quarantine time from traveling overseas, as long as they’re able to escape their everyday environs.
Skyscanner’s U.S. Travel Expert, Mark Crossey, observed: “It’s clear that Americans are keen to get out into the world again, with our survey participants stating they value travel more than dating or other leisure activities. As soon as the holiday season is over and people return to their daily routines, we expect keen vacationers will very quickly start planning their next international trips. With fewer restrictions in place, that interest will continue to grow as we get into 2022. Americans will not only carry on flying to their favorite spots around the world but will take advantage of increasing opportunity to enjoy emerging favorites and less mainstream destinations.”
According to Skyscanner’s data, the most-booked international destinations for the summer of 2022 thus far are New York, London, Paris, Rome and Barcelona, which would seem to suggest that people are prioritizing big bucket-list trips for next year’s vacations.