All is not doom and gloom as researchers take the temperature of potential consumer travelers this year. Results of a U.S. Traveler Sentiment index, called “Travelhorizons,” were reported in mid-March after being conducted by the consumer research firm YPartnership for the U.S. Travel Association. Travelhorizons compared the intentions of American consumers to travel in February 2009 compared to the start of the index two years earlier in March 2007, when it was set at 100 as a starting point. The reading of 90.2 in February, according to YPartnership, was a sharp increase from 78.2 in October of 2008. The surge in consumer interest was credited to “the affordability of travel” with this year’s cruise, hotel, car rental and attractions discounts seen as having marked impact on consumers’ interest to book trips. “This is the first increase we have observed in the index since January of 2008,” YPartnership chairman Peter Yesawich said in a Travel Trade report.
YPartnership / U.S.T.A. Survey Finds Consumer Travel Interest Rising