Survey: Despite COVID concerns, Florida remains a top travel destination this Labor Day weekend

by | Sep 1, 2021

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, many Americans are hitting the road this Labor Day weekend, with the Sunshine State being a hotspot for many vacationers.

ValuePenguin, a subsidiary of LendingTree, found that travelers are moving forward with their Labor Day plans amidst the delta variant surge. According to the survey of more than 2,000 consumers, 1 in 5 Americans — around 51 million — say they have plans to travel for Labor Day weekend. A breakdown of those traveling this Labor Day includes six-figure earners (32%), parents with kids under 18 (30%) and Gen Xers (25%).

ValuePenguin also noted in the report that 11 percent said they’ve canceled their trips as cases continue to rise — that figure includes both those who canceled their trips on their own, as well as others who may have had a travel provider cancel their itinerary or flight.

The financial planning company said that If Delta continues to gain traction, the potential of last-minute cancellations will inevitably rise.

“While 11 percent seems like a relatively low number, I fear that number may climb as Labor Day approaches,” said Sophia Mendel, travel writer at ValuePenguin.

Though the majority of travelers (56%) say they are limiting travel to within their home state, many are crossing state lines during Labor Day — with about 4 in 10 of those surveyed (38%) eyeing another state. Additionally, Florida was the top destination — with 12 percent of consumers heading South next weekend — followed by California and New York (both tied at 8%).

Although Florida is always a popular summer destination because of its beaches and attractions, Mendel said it is surprising that it leads other states this year given the recent coronavirus surge.

“I think it’s likely people are choosing to travel to Florida right now because the COVID rules are notoriously relaxed,” added Mendel. “A state with lax COVID restrictions is a bonus for those who want to make sure their travel plans don’t get canceled, even at the risk of possibly contracting and spreading Covid-19.”

ValuePenguin commissioned Qualtrics to conduct the online survey of 2,050 U.S. consumers from Aug. 2 to Aug. 6, 2021.

To view the full survey, click here.


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