Families Choosing Cheaper, Greener Getaways

If a tight budget or a shift in thinking has made your backyard barbecue your farthest and most exotic travel destination this holiday weekend, you are not alone. Many Americans are re-thinking the family vacation based on both costs and concerns for the environment.

According to a new CNN/ Research Opinion poll, 1 in 4 Americans have chosen to spend their Memorial Day holiday closer to home due to the current high price of gas. With each gallon costing nearly a dollar more than at the same time last year, families — particularly those in lower-income households — can’t afford the financial hit of a distant getaway.

A 2011 poll conducted by Trip Advisor shows vacation destinations this year trending toward the more family-oriented, with a high percentage of Americans planning local and nature-experience outdoor destinations:

Top five types of family trips in 2011:

  1. Beach destination – 57%
  2. City trip – 39%
  3. Amusement park / theme park – 23%
  4. Cultural trip – 21%
  5. Camping / outdoors trip – 17% 

Climbing prices and affordability in a weak economy are having other effects on vacation ideas.  This year, a survey by Lloyd’s TBS Insurance showed the newly popular travel trend of house-swapping was on the rise, with “an estimated 1.6 million people are on course to arrange a house swap this year, double the number that did it last year…”

With an eye to conservationism as well as cost, more Americans are also choosing “Green Travel” which focuses on responsible and sustainable vacation practices such as choosing destinations closer to home, eating locally and organically, opting for eco-friendly hotels and car rentals, and even volunteer vacations.

What did you choose to do with this long weekend – or the coming summer vacation?


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Photo from the author


Loo Samantha
Loo sam6 years ago

home sweet home. thanks for sharing.

Marie W.
Marie W6 years ago

Staycations are the future.

holly masih
.6 years ago

this is a good idea,we are thinking of spending time camping in the woods at a public park in a wooded area near us instead of travaling far from home as well.Besides,I can think of nothing more relaxing and peaceful than waking up and relaxing at night in a natural setting like that.

Maria M.
Maria M6 years ago

I don't travel much anymore... too many critters. So most of the time I go to porchville :)

Elvira S.
Elvira S6 years ago

I love my "Staycations", I can relax, not worry about traffic/airports/packing/petcare/parking, I get to enjoy my own environment, save tons of $$, and I feel truly rejuvenated.
I've done my share of travelling when I was young and now I just find it stressful.

Amanda M.
Amanda M6 years ago

The closest we get to a vacation is when my husband has the day off, and even then I NEVER get a vacation because housework, child-raising, and working our huge vegetable garden never end. The last real vacation my husband and I took was almost 11 years ago. Oh well...we can't afford even a weekend getaway anyway.

John S.
Past Member 6 years ago


Valarie S.
Valarie Snell6 years ago

good article

Rosie Lopez
Rosie Lopez6 years ago

thanks for sharing!

Lindsey Williams
Lindsey Williams6 years ago

thank you!