WASHINGTON, May 8, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- With summer right around the corner, most consumers plan to take a vacation, but more than half don't have credit cards that could earn them bonus rewards for traveling, according to U.S. News & World Report, the global authority in rankings and consumer advice.
In its most recent survey, U.S. News found that 54% of Americans are planning their next vacation, but many are not using a credit card to pay for it. Nearly half (45%) of respondents are not planning on paying for their upcoming trip with a credit card. What's more, 61% do not have a travel credit card, and 70% would not open a credit card to help pay for a vacation.
Of those who use a travel credit card, 49% have redeemed $1,051 or more in rewards over the past year. Overall, men are more likely than women to have a travel credit card and redeem the corresponding rewards.
"Purchasing big-ticket items like vacations on a credit card may seem intimidating, but it can actually be financially savvy," said Beverly Harzog, best-selling author, credit card expert and consumer finance analyst at U.S. News. "Using a credit card responsibly can mean consumers benefit from travel rewards like cash back, free nights at hotels or free flights. If you're planning on spending the money, you should reap the rewards."
Additional findings from the U.S. News Summer Travel Survey:
- When it comes to summer travel, people are looking for budget-friendly vacations. One-third of respondents are planning to spend less than $500 per person on their next vacation. Twenty-three percent plan to spend between $501 and $1,000, and 14% plan to spend between $1,001 and $1,500. Eleven percent plan to spend $3,001 or more per person, with respondents 65 or older accounting for the largest proportion of these big spenders.
- Vacationers plan to pay promptly… Twenty-seven percent of respondents who paid for the trip on a credit card plan to pay it off within a month of booking, and 12% plan to pay in one to three months. Of people 55 or older, 36% will pay off their trip within a month of booking, compared with only 24% of respondents ages 18-34 and 18% of those ages 35-44.
- …But aren't interested in research. Nearly one-third (31%) of individuals planning a vacation are not shopping around to save money on travel costs. Of those who report not shopping around for travel, 60% were women.
- Some travel rewards entice. Eighteen percent of respondents have (or would) open a credit card to help pay for a vacation using the sign-up bonus and/or rewards. The most appealing travel rewards include: cash back (19%), a free night at a hotel (18%) and free domestic flights (15%). Of those who say hotel upgrades are the most appealing credit card perk, 63% were women. At the same time, 65% of those who find flight upgrades most appealing are men.
U.S. News conducted the Summer Travel Survey through Google Surveys. From April 25 to 28, 2019, the survey asked 10 questions related to travel financial planning and sampled 1,023 people in the general American population who visit desktop and mobile sites where Google conducts surveys.
In addition to the survey, U.S. News publishes in-depth credit card guides to help consumers understand how to make credit cards work in their favor. Consumers can find more personal finance advice on travel rewards, maximizing rewards and much more.
About U.S. News & World Report
U.S. News & World Report is the global leader in quality rankings that empower people to make better, more informed decisions about important issues affecting their lives. A digital news and information company focused on Education, Health, Money, Travel, Cars and Civic, USNews.com provides consumer advice, rankings and analysis to serve people making complex decisions throughout all stages of life. More than 40 million people visit USNews.com each month for research and guidance. Founded in 1933, U.S. News is headquartered in Washington, D.C.
SOURCE U.S. News & World Report