Graphic Get Save Plan For Travel Postcard Hero Color

To any travel fanatic, planning and saving for a trip is always top of mind. However, did you know that the time it takes to save up for travel varies depending on how you’re saving and where you’re off to?

At Grand European Travel, we understand the importance of detailed vacation planning to realize your travel dreams. For over 40 years, the GET team has helped our guests plan effortless, fun, and affordable vacations. Still, we wanted to offer our our guests even more insight into planning and saving. So, we asked over 2,200 Americans how they plan and save for their adventures. We surveyed residents from every US state to find out various tendencies concerning saving and travel. We discovered aspects of their interest level in international travel, where they are interested in traveling, how much they travel in a year, and their financial practices (how much they put towards savings, for example).

From there, we cross-analyzed these results with the Bureau of Labor Statistics travel cost data for the average price of a quick getaway to an extended vacation to determine how long it would take to save for travel. It is important to note that due to their lower populations, we needed to receive more responses to include Alaska, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, & Wyoming.

Join us on this journey as we navigate the landscapes of budgeting, planning, and the pursuit of unforgettable experiences!

Plan: Pick a Place to Travel

Choosing a destination is the first pivotal step in the travel planning process, often fueled by a blend of personal interests, cultural curiosity, and the allure of exploration. This decision-making phase is a time of inspiration, where potential travelers weigh factors such as cultural attractions, natural beauty, adventure opportunities, and culinary experiences. It's also a period where practical considerations, like budget, travel restrictions, and accessibility, come into play.

An infographic showing various insights into Americans' interest in traveling abroad

Going on an international vacation requires thoughtful consideration. The choice of destination sets the stage for the entire travel experience, guiding subsequent decisions on savings, accommodations, and activities. With so many places to visit, the options are endless. But, the ideal destination depends on who is going. So, let's zoom in on travel interests and tendencies across generations and genders to discover Americans' top international travel interests.

Travel Interests & Tendencies Across Generations and Genders

Gen Zers stand out as the most eager to explore the world. Among those who have never traveled abroad, 91.7% of Gen Zers said they desire to travel. Millennials, at 89.4%, and Gen Xers, at 74.6%, are just a little behind, expressing an interest in international travel. Meanwhile, only 69.6% of Baby Boomers who have yet to travel abroad want to, exhibiting a slightly lower interest in doing so while still curious.

We also found that men and women have differing dream destinations. Of almost a quarter of those surveyed, men in particular said they would like to travel to Japan. They also express strong interest in Australia (9.6%), Ireland (6.9%) and Great Britain (6.2%). Comparatively, women dream of traveling to Europe, with Italy at the top of most lists (16.3%), Ireland (11.1%), Greece (10.6%), and Australia (9.4%) rounding out their top five.

Italy's Timeless Appeal for Americans

Residents of 18 states want to visit Italy for their next international trip. Of those we surveyed, 16.3% of women and 12.7% of men responded that Italy is their dream destination.

Grand Canal with gondolas at sunset, Venice, Italy

A trip to Italy tops the list for the majority of US states

Italy's magnetic pull on American travelers isn't just about the sumptuous cuisine or the picturesque coastlines; it's deeply rooted in a rich tapestry of history, art, and culture that has captivated travelers since the 'Grand Tour' of the 17th and 18th centuries. This historical tradition of visiting Italy for its cultural and educational experiences has evolved. Still, the essence remains the same, making Italy the quintessential destination for those seeking to immerse themselves in the epitome of Renaissance art, Roman history, and unparalleled culinary traditions.

The enduring allure of Italy as a dream destination for Americans is a testament to its unparalleled cultural, historical, and culinary wealth. Travelers' meticulous planning and saving habits reflect a deep-seated desire to fully immerse themselves in the Italian experience, seeking a vacation and an authentic engagement with Italy's timeless beauty and rich heritage.

Travel to Japan Trends for Americans

Residents in 17 states desire to visit Japan, so this gorgeous country lands next on our list. Overall, 17.7% of all respondents expressed their desire to explore Japan. For men, Japan trends as a favorite at 23.5%. While 12.8% of women want to explore the island nation.

Kyoto, Japan Senbon Torii Red Gates and a woman walking with an umbrella on one of our Americas Tours.

The striking mix of ancient and modern keeps Americans interested in traveling to Japan

Japan's cultural landscape is holds age-old traditions that continue to play a significant role in everyday life. From serene tea ceremonies offering insights into the art of tea, which is a meditative practice, to the flowing ancient script of calligraphers, Japan offers a deep dive into practices that have been preserved over centuries.

The country's dedication to its history and traditions is also evident in the meticulous preservation of its temples, shrines, and historical buildings. Cities like Kyoto, with over 2,000 temples and shrines, including the iconic blazing orange torii gates of Fushimi Inari Shrine, offer visitors an understanding of the depth of Japan's cultural heritage.

Conversely, the country's technology and architecture also vividly display Japan's modernity. Tokyo, the bustling capital, is a neon-lit city where futuristic technology, fashion, and an extraordinary culinary scene coexist with pockets of serene gardens and quiet temples. The blend of old and new is a unique characteristic of Japan, offering an urban experience unlike any other in the world.

Visiting Ireland is Top in Three US States

Ireland's allure, capturing the hearts of residents in three particular states – Tennessee, Utah, and Indiana, can be attributed to its enchanting landscapes, rich historical tapestry, and the legendary Irish hospitality that extends a warm welcome to visitors from all corners of the globe. Delving deeper into the reasons behind Ireland's appeal to these states reveals a multifaceted attraction that combines natural beauty, cultural richness, and a sense of adventure.

Killarney National Park, Ireland

Enchanting landscapes, historic sites, and warm hospitality make Ireland a top destination

Ireland's landscapes are a spellbinding mix of rugged coastlines, rolling green hills, and serene lakes. The Cliffs of Moher, Ring of Kerry, and the wild Connemara region offer breathtaking views that seem to leap from the pages of a fantasy novel. These natural wonders provide a stark contrast to the urban landscapes of the American states, offering residents from Tennessee, Utah, and Indiana a chance to immerse themselves in Ireland's tranquil beauty.

Irish hospitality is legendary, with its friendly locals and cozy pubs offering a welcoming atmosphere that can make visitors feel like they've come home. The cultural experience of enjoying traditional Irish music, dance, and storytelling in a local pub is unmatched. This sense of community and belonging is particularly appealing to residents from states like Tennessee, Utah, and Indiana, where community values and hospitality are deeply ingrained. 

Where will you go?

Whether drawn to the historic streets of European cities, the tranquil beaches of a tropical island, or the rugged landscapes of a distant land, the destination chosen reflects the traveler's aspirations, dreams, and desires for discovery and adventure, making it a deeply personal and significant decision in the journey towards creating unforgettable memories. Once you have a destination in mind, the next step is a more involved task — saving.

Save: Start Saving for a Trip

American’s desire to travel internationally is undeniable, with a resounding 84% of Americans who have never traveled abroad reporting the wish to do so. Our data shows that one of the more challenging aspects of turning this dream into a reality, saving up, varies greatly from state to state. Some of these factors include the amount they prioritize travel in their budgets, the different savings techniques they use, and the number of trips throughout the year.

How Americans Save for Travel

Using the number of quick getaways and extended vacations each state reported taking on average, as well as the cost of those trips and how much money they save each month, we were able to calculate how long it would take residents each state to save for their vacations.

Delaware emerges as the most financially savvy state when it comes to travel: Delaware residents save the most for travel each month, putting away about $790 a month. At that rate, they can afford a long-term vacation in just four months — the shortest amount of time in any state.

In Arkansas, residents take a more leisurely approach to travel saving. According to respondents, Arkansans save about $242 a month – the least of any state. This slow and steady pace means that it takes over a year (13 months) for residents of the Bear State to have enough saved for a long-term trip.

Residents across the country save about $480 a month on average, meaning that Americans can expect about seven months of saving before booking their next trip abroad. As you chart your own course for travel savings, consider the balance between the frequency of your adventures and the time it takes to save up for those experiences.

The Fastest Way to Save for a Trip

Are you eager to embark on your dream vacation but unsure how long it'll take to save up for it? We understand that planning the perfect vacation often involves meticulous financial considerations. To shed some light on this, we've analyzed data to provide you with insights on how various saving methods can affect the time it takes to fund your next adventure.

High-yield savings accounts emerge as the clear winner for those with the ambition to explore the world sooner rather than later. Survey respondents who opt for this savvy saving method manage to put aside an impressive $650 per month on average. This substantial monthly contribution significantly accelerates one toward their next vacation.

On the opposite end, we have diligent collectors of spare bit of change and cash to add to a coin jar or piggy bank. While this approach might be characterized by its resourcefulness, it results in a more modest savings of about $55 a month. At that rate, it would take the average spare-change-saver nearly 11 months to save for a weekend away and just about five years to save for a week-long trip. For these dedicated savers, the path to adventure is paved with patience and frugality.

Many of those saving for travel find themselves in the middle ground between these two. These travelers opt for standard savings accounts and save at a moderate pace. Respondents who use typical savings accounts said they put away about $400 a month. At that rate, it would take travelers nearly a month and a half to save for a short-term trip. However, when it comes to planning a longer escape, patience is paramount. These diligent savers would need to commit about eight months' worth of steady savings to afford a long-term vacation.

Whether you're sprinting toward a quicker trip or planning on taking your time along the way, understanding these insights can help you plan your journey effectively.

Final Insights & Your Travel Plans

Ensuring that our fellow adventurers are well-prepared for their journeys is at the heart of what we do here at Grand European Travel. As travelers, we understand that the path to a dream vacation is paved with anticipation, excitement, and careful planning. We firmly believe that travel should be accessible to all, and that's why we strive to offer deals and discounts on tours and river cruises that cater to various budgets and interests. To start planning your next international trip, check out our all worldwide vacations and expert travel advice to get inspired for your next trip. 

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