Vacasa unpacks top travel trends for this summer

Vacation rental management platform Vacasa teamed up with Allison + Partners to get a temperature check on what travel trends to expect this summer.

The forecast? It’s bright, with 59% of Americans planning a summer getaway in 2021. Though many pandemic trends will stick around this season, like the preference for beach-bound road trips, there are a few things (such as family reunions and weddings) that people are putting back on the calendar.

“Summer vacations are an age-old tradition and one that people are understandably eager to get back to,” said Natalia Sutin, VP, revenue management, Vacasa. “Our survey revealed that of those planning a summer vacation, 61% are traveling for the first time since the onset of the pandemic. We’re seeing that pent-up demand translate to summer bookings, but it isn’t just an increase over last year due to vaccine availability in the U.S.; many of Vacasa’s top vacation destinations already have double the reservations for June, July and August compared to what was booked at this time in 2019.”

Here’s a snapshot of how, where and why people are planning to enjoy some fun in the sun, according to Vacasa’s summer survey of 1,001 U.S. consumers over the age of 18:

  • Of those traveling, most (34%) will be spending a long weekend, or three-four days, away from home, followed closely by 32% planning a five- to seven-day getaway.
  • Though nearly a quarter (22%) of people who traveled during the pandemic will be boarding a plane for the first time in the months ahead, 41% are opting to skip the skies altogether.
  • When asked to select their top two priorities, travelers most often said that the people they’re traveling with (39%) and going to a destination they’re already familiar with (36%) were most important when planning their summer vacation.
  • Family reunions are the most likely group event that will get Americans traveling this summer (32%), followed closely by entertainment-related events (concert, sporting event, etc.) at 30% and weddings at 15%.
  • 37% of travelers are making up for plans that were cancelled last summer by visiting the same destination that they originally intended to visit, or one nearby.
  • Regardless of summer travel plans, 64% of Americans have already gotten, or plan to get, the COVID-19 vaccine before they travel—up from 59% who said the same in Vacasa’s spring survey.

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