AAA:Georgia traveling to increase

The majority of Georgia residents (81 percent) plan to kick start the summer travel season by taking at least one leisure trip of 50 miles or more requiring overnight accommodations during the next three months. This reflects a 2 percentage point increase from 2013, according to a recent AAA Consumer Pulse™ survey on summer travel plans.

“This marks the third consecutive year that AAA data shows a steady summer travel season in Georgia —a positive sign for the travel industry,” said Jessica Brady, AAA Travel, The Auto Club Group. “Although theme parks, beach getaways, and city destinations top 2014’s summer travel list, the majority of people haven’t finalized their vacation plans.

“Travelers who wait until the last minute to book their hotel, rental car, or airline ticket can expect to pay more than if they book weeks in advance. Just as travel demand is expected to increase this summer, the cost to vacation could also rise if you do not have a plan,” Brady added.

The majority of travelers (60 percent) plan to spend $1,500 or less on travel in the next three months. More than half (59 percent) will pay for a hotel during a summer vacation, while 35 percent will cut costs by staying with family and friends.

Although only 29 percent plan to rent a car this summer, two-thirds of travelers (66 percent) plan to drive at least five hours to get to their destination or for sightseeing.

“Road trips are popular for Georgia residents because beaches and theme parks are typically within a one day drive,” said Mark Jenkins, spokesman, AAA – The Auto Club Group. “Gasoline prices are beginning to let up just in time for the busy summer driving season. Pump prices are not expected to have a negative impact on travel plans.”

Consumers who use a AAA travel agent to help plan their vacation can save up to 35 percent on average with hotel, rental car, and inclusive packaging no matter the destination. For more information on the latest travel deals, visit AAA.com/Travel.

The Auto Club Group (ACG) is the second largest AAA club in North America. ACG and its affiliates provide membership, travel, insurance and financial services offerings to approximately 8.8 million members across 11 states and two U.S. territories including Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, North Dakota, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands; most of Illinois and Minnesota; and a portion of Indiana. ACG belongs to the national AAA federation with nearly 54 million members in the United States and Canada and whose mission includes protecting and advancing freedom of mobility and improving traffic safety.

The AAA Consumer Pulse™ Survey was conducted online among residents living in the Southern Region of The Auto Club Group (Florida, Georgia, and Tennessee) from April 14 - 21. A total of 400 Georgia residents completed the survey. The survey has a maximum margin of error of ± 4.9 percentage points. Overall survey responses are weighted by gender and age to ensure reliable and accurate representation of the adult population (18+) in Georgia.