More Americans plan vacations, even as they sour on the economy

Augusta Saraiva | (TNS) Bloomberg News

Americans might be fretting about the job market and inflation, but it’s not stopping them from splurging on vacations.

Nearly half of consumers in August were planning a trip in the next six months — the highest share all year, according to Conference Board survey data Tuesday. And about one in five of them are going abroad, a record share in the data going back to the 1970s.

Demand for international travel has largely recovered as Americans take advantage of reopening borders, a strong dollar and lower airfares in recent months. That’s prompting airlines to boost service and expand routes, and has helped drive a measure of spending abroad by US travelers to an all-time high earlier this year.

The vacation plans reflect Americans’ incessant demand for experiences in a post-pandemic world. Despite an overall easing in consumer confidence in August as inflation and interest-rate expectations rose, many households are still buoyed by the healthy labor market and excess savings.

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