Booking to Remain Strong for 2011

Despite extreme volatility in the U.S. economy, travel agents indicate that bookings are slightly up this fall according to the Fall Travel Trends Survey conducted every year by Travel Leaders By: Monica Poling

The Details

Travel Leaders

Despite extreme volatility in the United States’ economy in the month of August, travel agents from across the country indicate that fall bookings are slightly higher for this year than they were in 2010, according to the yearly Fall Travel Trends Survey conducted by Travel Leaders.

Las Vegas, Orlando and Honolulu, respectively, are the top three destinations being booked for the remainder of the year, although the top recommended destination from Travel Leaders agents is Maui, followed by Orlando and Honolulu.
Internationally, London makes a jump into the top three, sneaking past Rome and placing just behind Caribbean cruising and Cancun, Mexico. Travel Leaders agents’ top recommendations are Mexico’s Riviera Maya, followed by Rome and Cancun.

The following information and trends are reported by travel agents, based on confirmed bookings, for the remainder of the year. 

Domestic Destinations
Las Vegas, NV (48.1 percent)
Orlando, FL (46.5 percent)
Honolulu, HI (35.2 percent)
New York City, NY (31.6 percent)
Kahului (Maui), HI (26 percent)
Washington, D.C. (18.1 percent)
Chicago, IL (15.1 percent)
Los Angeles, CA (12.4 percent)
San Francisco, CA (12 percent)
Phoenix/Scottsdale, AZ (11.5 percent)

International Destinations
Cruise, Caribbean (44.5 percent)
Cancun, Mexico (33 percent)
London, England (21.7 percent)
Rome, Italy (21 percent)
Cruise, Europe/Mediterranean (19 percent)
Riviera Maya, Mexico (17.6 percent)
Paris, France (16.3 percent)
Montego Bay, Jamaica (14.5 percent)
Playa del Carmen, Mexico (11.1 percent)
Punta Cana, Dominican Rep. (10.8 percent)

Top Recommendations for Leisure Travel
When Travel Leaders owners, managers and agents were asked “If your leisure clients were looking for a recommendation on a domestic destination (excluding cruises), what would be your number one recommendation?” the top responses were: 
Las Vegas  (tie)
San Francisco (tie)

When asked “If your leisure clients were looking for a recommendation on an international destination, what would be your top recommendation?” the top responses were:
Riviera Maya, Mexico
Rome, Italy
Cancun, Mexico
Paris, France
Playa del Carmen, Mexico

More People Traveling in 2011
When asked to compare overall 2011 travel bookings so far to 2010 at this time last year, 55.3% indicated that their bookings were higher and 24.2% indicated that they were the same as compared to a year ago. This also represents a huge turnaround from responses as recently as two years ago.

Optimism in the Travel Industry
When asked for their personal outlook on their business for the remainder of 2011, an overwhelming majority (91.6 percent) are either positive or neutral, with 71.1 percent reporting optimism.

About Travel Leaders
Conducted August 1-19, 2011, the Fall Travel Trends Survey includes responses from 443 Travel Leaders owners, managers and frontline travel agents throughout the United States.
Travel Leaders is part of Travel Leaders Group – which is a North American travel company that generates gross travel sales in excess of $16.6 billion. Travel Leaders Group is a leader in both the retail travel agency space and corporate travel, and it consistently ranks as one of the top travel companies nationwide.