If fuel costs continue to rise, more than half of Americans said they may rethink their plans for summer road trips, according a new national survey.
For vacationers who plan to travel by car this summer, 54% said higher fuel costs would affect their vacation plans, according to a survey of 2,500 Americans by the U.S. Travel Assn., the trade group for the nation’s travel industry.
If the price of a gallon of gas rises by at least 26 cents, 57% of those who plan to travel by car this summer said they would definitely alter their plans.
In response to higher fuel prices, 44% of would-be road warriors said they would travel less, 44% would spend less on shopping, 37% would spend less at restaurants, 36% would drive shorter distances and 35% would spend less on entertainment, according to the survey.
“If travelers are spending more on gas, they are spending less on hotels, attractions, shopping and restaurants, which could have a negative impact on our overall economy,” said Roger Dow, chief executive of the Washington, D.C.-based U.S. Travel Assn.
Higher fuel prices would not affect business travelers as severely, with only 27% of those with plans to travel for business this summer saying higher gasoline costs would affect them.
For Americans who plan to fly for summer leisure trips, 43% said rising air fares resulting from higher fuel costs could affect their plans, according to the survey. In response to higher air fares, nearly 40% of those planning to fly this summer said they would seek out cheaper flights.