Travel intentions pulse survey


The MMGY Travel Intelligence team, conducts an ongoing tracking survey to monitor the impact of COVID-19 on the travel intentions of U.S. business and leisure travelers. This survey measures current and future traveler sentiment amid the COVID-19 pandemic and tracks trends and shifts in travel intentions. The study polls respondents for both domestic and international travel intent by purpose and type.

Key Findings from Wave VI of the study:

Despite the nationwide increase in COVID-19 cases, consumers’ concern about contracting the virus has not increased in the latest survey results.

This may be the reason that the likelihood of taking a domestic leisure trip within the next six months remained at 40%. More than that (64%) said they expect to book a leisure trip within the next 6 months.

However, the likelihood to engage in outdoor activities such as visiting a park or a beach on vacation declined in Wave VI. The perceived safety of these activities also declined, which may be attributable to incessant news coverage highlighting crowded beaches.

Those that were already hesitant to travel, however, are becoming even more cautious. In the most recent survey, 21% indicated they are not at all likely to take a leisure trip in the next six months – up from just 13% in Wave V.

Although the intent to take a domestic leisure trip remained constant, those expecting to travel for domestic business declined considerably. In the most recent survey, only one-third of confirmed business travelers indicated a likelihood to take a domestic business  trip in the next six months – down from 40% in Wave V.

International travel intent remains low as only 1 in 5 travelers (22%) say they are likely to take an international leisure trip during the next six months – down slightly from the previous wave (24%). Of course, the EU’s recent ban on travel from the U.S. may be contributing to this trend.

Travelers continue to report being twice as likely to travel by personal car (67%) than by any other form of transportation. And one-third of those respondents are likely to drive 300 miles or more each way from home for a vacation, with 1 in 5 willing to travel 500 miles or more.

Survey results in the latest wave found that travelers are still reluctant to board a plane. However, those that are willing are much more likely to take a domestic flight (31%) than an international flight (20%).

After an increase in Wave V, the likelihood of staying in a hotel/resort or vacation home leveled off in this wave. This reinforces the fact that the industry still faces strong headwinds on the path to recovery.

Click here to download the survey.