Travel Trends Show Post-Pandemic Rebound is in Full Effect
After Two Years of Staying at Home, Americans are Ready to Hit the Road Again
After staying close to home for a couple of very long years, it looks like Americans are starting to hit the road again. Two new independent reports indicate that travel is on the rebound in a very big way throughout 2022. In fact, it has already started to surpass pre-pandemic levels in some ways.
According to Arrivalist—a tech startup that monitors consumer trip activity—March saw a noticeable uptick in the number of road trips taken. The company uses locational data to track where people are going and what they are doing when they get there. That data helps formulate the Daily Travel Index—a rolling 28-day snapshot of current travel trends.
In mid-March, the Arrivalist’s data identified a .4% increase in road trip activity compared to the rest of the year so far. That number may not seem very significant, but it is enough to push trip activity to its highest number since before the start of the pandemic. Spring break helped bolster those numbers, as March travel was severely limited in 2020 and 2021
While Arrivalist is busy tracking current trends, RMS North America is looking further ahead. The company—which offers a cloud-based reservation system for the outdoor hospitality industry—recently released its State of the Industry Report for 2022. Using data collected through its online systems and a survey of thousands of travelers, RMS has also concluded that travel is on the upswing but with a few caveats.
While the data collected by RMS indicates 48% of survey respondents plan to take more trips in 2022, most of those excursions will take place within 300 miles of home. Additionally, 59% of those who took part in the survey indicate they will only travel domestically this year, with the majority preferring to travel by car rather than airplane despite high gas prices. Travelers felt that by road tripping, they could avoid crowded airports as concerns of possible exposure to COVID remain.
RMS notes that camping remains a popular activity, with the survey revealing that respondents were 30% more likely to stay in a campground this year. Of those, 69% say they pick those campgrounds based on their location and proximity to local attractions.
“The outdoor hospitality industry is on the cusp of an exciting growth period driven by consumers’ strong desire for travel,” says Frederic Dominioni, Chief Revenue Officer, RMS North America. “People are ready to travel again, they’ve been ready, and we see that reflected in our data.”
Data from both Arrivalist and RMS point to a rebound in the domestic travel industry in 2022. That increase could make booking campgrounds, hotels, and activities a challenge throughout the year. Plan accordingly when making your travel plans for the months ahead.