How the pandemic is affecting travel trends and the economy

  • Despite more trips by automobile, gasoline demand is still below pre-pandemic levels.
  • Spending patterns are changing as more Americans stay closer to home for vacations and choose road trips over flying.

By Debbie Carlson for CME Group

Americans are choosing road trips over flights as they choose a safer-perceived way to vacation, and that’s having an economic impact, say analysts who follow the travel and retail industries. The phenomenon is expected to last at least through the end of 2020, if not early 2021, but it remains to be seen if this is a structural change in consumer habits.

Omer Rabin, managing director at Guesty, a property management software firm used for short-term rentals, says they are seeing several travel trends. Trips are shorter distanced, generally about 100 miles away, and reservations are very last minute. They’re also seeing travelers repeatedly book the same units, with those stays growing from

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