Category Archives: Travel Industry

It’s Summertime, Summertime, Sum-Sum-Summertime!

This is our first article in a series of three regarding the fun summer unfolding and the way we will spend it.  To make it more interesting, we’ve divided our expected spending and behavior patters by the major spending generation.  Baby Boomers are now 55 to 73 years of age.  Gen X is 40 to 54.  Millennials, our largest group are now 24 to 38.

With summer-time upon us, the travel season is hitting the peak.  Consumers are hitting the roads and taking to the skies in droves in order to do everything from working, to visiting family, and even just taking the time to do something as simple as creating a memorable and educational experience.  With schools out for the summer, many families are taking summertime as the usual opportunity to create multi-generational memories.  And with Atlanta being the busiest airport in the world, with more passengers coming through per day than any other airport (and Chicago a close second), Atlanta is perfectly situated not just for domestic travel, but for international travel as well.

So who is traveling and where are they going?  We gathered up some interesting statistics from current studies to give you a glimpse of who might be coming to your neck of the woods and what they might be doing when they get there.  According to a survey by AARP taken in 2018 of more than 1,700 American travelers, we get a pretty good idea of where the three main groups  are going and why in the table below.

Base:  International and Domestic Trips in 2018: 
Data based on Total Responses, up to 5 trips discussed 
n = base number of responses; pink indicates most popular selections. 
Source:  AARP “Travel Research: 2018 Travel Trends” Report 
and JB Research Company

Millennials are traveling more than other generational groups, and they are taking more celebration vacations.  They are enjoying multi-generational trips, which is important because family size and expenditures are necessarily higher.  Baby Boomers also are planning multi-generational trips.  Gen X takes the most weekend getaways.

The primary mode of transportation for domestic and international travel are: plane (66% domestic & 87% international), cruises (5% domestic & 35% international), train (6% domestic & 16% international), rental car (24% domestic & 14% international), personal car (60% domestic & 13% international), and buses (2% domestic & 10% international) (AARP).

According to the same  survey, here is a more detailed look at why the three main demographic groups choose to travel in 2018:

Base:  International and Domestic Trips in 2018: Data based on 
Total Responses, up to 5 trips discussed

n = base number of responses; pink indicates most popular 

Source:  AARP “Travel Research: 2018 Travel Trends” Report 
and JB Research Company

Other reasons the three groups choose to travel are visiting family and friends, rejuvenating, and getting away from a busy life:

Source:  AARP “Travel Research: 2018 Travel Trends” Report

Many in each of these groups will choose not to travel this summer, with cost being the main impediment, as shown below:

Source:  AARP “Travel Research: 2018 Travel Trends” Report

Source:  AARP “Travel Research: 2018 Travel Trends” Report

All three generations plan to spend spend significantly more in 2018 than 2017, with Millennials planning to spend the most on vacations.

As suppliers of retail, dining and entertainment experiences, we should take note of these trends and make this the best and most profitable  year ever!





11 Bedroom Home in Tuscany

How can you go on a fantastic summer vacation and stay within a budget? With the recession impacting every area of our lives, we are all looking for ways to economize without giving up lifestyle.  I found a great way to go on a fabulous foreign vacation and pay just a fraction of the cost.

I recently had dinner with a friend whose company builds timeshares in beautiful and exotic locales.  He was talking about their target market, namely Boomers seeking vacations that connect with multiple generations:  kids, parents, grandparents and even great-grandparents.  For this, a family can pay up to $50,000 for a one to two week time period scheduled annually.

“What about home exchange,” I asked him.

“Oh, I’ve heard about that, how does it work?”

For those of you who don’t know this service, it is a very cost-effective way to temporarily trade your home with someone anywhere in the world.  You register with a website and pay about $10 per month to have your home registered for exchange.  You have access to more than 35,000 listings all around the world.  Of course, you make your property sound gorgeous and desirable when you list it, providing pictures of your home when it had just been landscaped and was clean and sparkly.  This gives you access to some incredible homes in a chosen summer, Christmas, Winter or any season location.  We chose Madrid, Barcelona, Paris, Athens and Sydney for our first try.  I know this doesn’t sound like a list of places with much in common!  But we are being extremely flexible since we will pay only for airfare.

View from a Villa on the Greek Island of Paros

And oh, how beautiful are some of the homes!  A 16th century castle in Northern England; a seven-room apartment in Paris; a drug lord’s mansion in Costa Rica (just kidding, but it looked like it could be owned by someone selling questionable substances).  Like Christmas, you send out emails from your own home page to places that pique your interest.  Then, you wait!  Most we have received are from nice families telling us they already have their plans/exchanges complete for the summer.  But we also received several intriguing responses.

There are a few drawbacks.  First, you can’t be obsessive about your house.  I wouldn’t leave any priceless art on the walls.  And any electronics, you might find them nonfunctional when you return, if you leave them available.  But with these few caveats, you have the world at your fingertips!

A few ways this may not work:  1) Your house is not very attractive; 2) You don’t live in a desirable location; or    3) You don’t want strangers staying in your house.

Villa in Vence, France

I am thrilled about the possibilities and we are currently waiting to confirm our location for summer vacation with our grown children and their girlfriends.  Still, I am wondering if this service has impacted the fractional/timeshare world?  Post your comments or email me about your multi-generational vacations.  I am anxious to hear stories about home exchange or other creative ways of vacationing these days!


All pictures are actual listings at