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AARP Unveils Top 2015 Trends for 50+ Travelers

The 50+ Spend $120 Billion a Year in Leisure Travel with a Majority Planning Four–Five Trips Next Year

 /PRNewswire/ — AARP, the nation's largest advocate for 50+, today announced its 2015 Top Travel Trends for Americans 50+ (http://www.aarp.org/2015TravelTrends). Travel is the number one aspirational activity for people 50+.
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According to the AARP 2015 Travel Trends survey, baby boomers will be active travelers in 2015, taking an average of four to five trips next year. The 50+ spend $120 Billion every year in leisure travel and it is not slowing down. How they travel, where they travel and what they take with them might surprise you. Top reasons for 50+ travel include escape, relaxation and time with family and friends. The 50+ travelers are looking to mainly relax and rejuvenate during their travel next year as opposed to adventure travel.

“We are excited to see that compared to 2014, people 50+ plan to take more trips in 2015 despite the current political and health concerns abroad,” said Stephanie Miles, Vice President, Member Value, AARP. “We are pleased that boomers remain enthusiastic about travel and are planning for more multigenerational travel next year.”

“We also found that for the 50+ packing up doesn't mean totally unplugging, with 46 percent admitting they will probably need to stay connected to work while on vacation,” continued Miles.

Key highlights from the AARP 2015 Travel Trends Predictions include:

Will the 50+Travel more in 2015 than 2014?

  • 48% of the 50+ say, “Yes!” They plan to travel more next year than this year.
  • 51% say they will save more of their money specifically for travel.

Domestic Versus International Travel

  • 97% will take at least one domestic trip in 2015.
  • 47% say they plan for more domestic travel in 2015 than 2014.
  • 45% plan to take at least one international trip.
  • 23% say they plan more international trips in 2015 than 2014.

What kind of trips are people 50+ planning for 2015?

  • Extended Family Trips: 33% of travelers 50+ will take at least one multigenerational trip. This trend is expected to increase for Generation X'ers who will begin to join the 50+ next year.
  • Summer Vacations: 54% will take a summer vacation either domestically or abroad with 35% headed to the beach.
  • Weekend Getaways: 26% will plan weekend getaways for a quick break or family event with the fall or spring being popular times for those trips.
  • Romantic Travel: Love is in the air with 28% planning romantic travel either domestically or internationally.
  • Solo Travel represents 28% of planned 2015 trips and could prove to be the ultimate in freedom and rejuvenation when travelers 50+ are in total control of their trips.
  • Staycation: Four in ten boomers took a staycation this year and anticipate taking one again in 2015. Many find great opportunities to enjoy time in their own backyards.

Bucket List will be the Biggest Motivator for International 50+ Travel People 50+ plan to fulfill their travel dreams and are actively planning for trips on their personal bucket lists. AARP predicts that 32 percent of people 50+ that will travel internationally in 2015 will do so to check off a destination on their bucket list. Destinations include Paris, Italy, London, Caribbean Islands and other international spots.

Will recent changes in World Politics and Health Crises impact the 50+ Traveler in 2015? The political unrest and turmoil in certain key parts of the world and the Ebola health scare are not projected to impact people 50+ who plan to travel both domestically and internationally next year. Of the survey respondents an overwhelming 82 percent said the current political and health landscape will not impact their travel plans next year.

So what are the projected barriers to 50+ Travel in 2015?
Cost, Health and Family Obligations will be Biggest Barriers to 50+Travel in 2015.

  • 51 percent of 50+ cite cost as the number one barrier to traveling but are determined to plan well in advance for 2015 and take more trips for less.
  • Those aged 70+ say health concerns prevent them from taking trips they want to, while those 50-59 are challenged to find the time for travel, primarily due to work and family commitments.

Despite these barriers, it is interesting to see 17 percent of survey respondents say, “Nothing can stop me from traveling,” next year. While there is an acknowledgment of their biggest challenges, in 2015 boomers by large seem determined to overcome these barriers to visit their favorite destinations be it just domestic or domestic and international.

There are several ways to overcome those barriers so you can dream, plan, book, and share your travel moments. AARP Travel Ambassador Samantha Brown says, “This is why it's important to start planning and therefore looking forward to a big trip now. When you're emotionally hooked on a place, you'll be more likely to find the time and money.”

AARP has been a leader in the field of travel for people 50+ and their families since 1958 and identifies emerging trends that influence how their members dream, plan and book vacations. AARP Travel (http://travel.aarp.org) provides information, tools, and gives access to discounts to help people 50+ plan, book, and experience trips they want to take – whether it is a quick getaway or a trip of a lifetime. For the full report on 2015 AARP Travel Trends, visit http://www.aarp.org/2015TravelTrends.

Here's a tweet if you would like to share these new insights with your friends and family planning a trip in 2015:

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AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, with a membership of nearly 38 million, that helps people turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities and fights for the issues that matter most to families such as healthcare, employment and income security, retirement planning, affordable utilities and protection from financial abuse. We advocate for individuals in the marketplace by selecting products and services of high quality and value to carry the AARP name as well as help our members obtain discounts on a wide range of products, travel, and services. A trusted source for lifestyle tips, news and educational information, AARP produces AARP The Magazine, the world's largest circulation magazine; AARP Bulletin; www.aarp.org; AARP TV & Radio; AARP Books; and AARP en Español, a Spanish-language website addressing the interests and needs of Hispanics. AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to political campaigns or candidates. The AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity that provides security, protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors, and sponsors. AARP has staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Learn more at www.aarp.org.

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