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Travelers Staying Closer To Home This Summer
May 28, 2010

Americans aren't in the mood to spend much on travel this summer. More people are expected to hit the road than did last year, but their budgets will be tighter because of high unemployment, stock markets in retreat and a still fragile economy. AAA estimates families will spend an average of $809 on summer travel, compared with $876 in 2009, even though flying is more expensive than it was a year ago.

They're knocking down the cost, travel agents say, by staying closer to home, choosing less-expensive modes of transportation or by picking destinations based on the best fares and lodging they can find. In states from Texas to Florida that are threatened by the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, resorts are offering free golf and complimentary room nights.
Some have promised a full refund if oil hits popular beaches.

The vast majority of Americans drive to their summer vacation spots, and they should get a break at the pump in the weeks ahead. The nationwide average for gas is $2.76 a gallon, and analysts think it could fall as low as $2.65 by July 4. The Recreation Vehicle Industry Association says 45.4% of RV owners say they expect to travel more this summer than they did in 2009.

Source: AP;; Page 1B, USA Today - through AAA H&A Media Group

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