ST. PETERSBURG, Fla., Dec. 15, 2020 – US travelers are pivoting their Christmas travel plans, instead of canceling them, according to a new report by travel insurance comparison site, Squaremouth.com.
While the data collected shows expected trends, like less travel overall, it also reveals how travelers are adapting in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
Decrease in Travelers
Travel insurance sales for the holiday season decreased by 15% compared to last year, reports Squaremouth, correlating with the anticipated decrease in travel this holiday season.
This is far less drastic than earlier months in the pandemic, when Squaremouth saw a decrease in travel insurance purchases by as much as 90%.
US Travel Spending Triples
Squaremouth reports the total amount of insured expenses tripled what it saw during the 2019 holiday season.
Despite travel deals and more lenient refund policies, US travelers staying stateside are insuring, on average, over $1,000 more per trip than last Christmas. Travelers taking domestic trips are spending just over $5,000, with trips remaining about one week long.
Domestic Travel Doubles International Trips
For the first time in recent years, domestic travel exceeds overall international travel during the Christmas period.
Squaremouth reports a 136% increase in domestic travel this year compared to the 2019 holiday season. However, the site has seen a 53% decrease in international trips.
Caribbean Countries Flood Top Destinations
Of those travelers still opting to travel internationally, most will be spending the holidays in the Caribbean, which remains widely open to tourists despite international border closures.
Continuing a trend seen earlier this year, the vast majority of Squaremouth’s top international destinations are Caribbean countries: Mexico, Costa Rica, Turks and Caicos, US Virgin Islands, Jamaica, Dominican Republic, Aruba and St. Lucia.
Travelers with trips planned during the holidays can search for policies that include trip cancellation or emergency medical coverage for contracting COVID-19.
Methodology: Data is based on travel insurance policies purchased through Squaremouth.com between March 12th – December 2nd, 2020, for travel between December 18th, 2020 – January 8th, 2021. Statistics reflect year-over-year changes for those same time periods.