WASHINGTON, DC (Feb. 28, 2023) – More Americans are heading abroad this Spring Break. AAA booking data shows international travel this season is up 30% over 2022. Many families are also taking multigenerational vacations. A new AAA survey shows more than 40% of U.S. adults with Spring Break plans are traveling with three generations.
“Families are making up for lost time,” said Paula Twidale, AAA Senior Vice President of Travel. “We’ve seen a spike in international Spring Break bookings. Americans are taking advantage of the strong U.S. dollar and the exchange rate in Europe. Travelers looking for warm weather are flocking to the Caribbean and Mexico or sailing to tropical destinations while enjoying the amenities of a cruise vacation.”
Beach vacations are the most popular among Spring Breakers, according to AAA’s survey. Florida is the top domestic destination with its beaches, theme parks, and cruise ports. Hawaii is another Spring Break favorite, with six unique islands and stunning scenery. AAA tour partner Pleasant Holidays says bookings for Hawaiian hotels and cruises are popular this year, as many travelers are opting for warm weather beach destinations.
Cruising is making a big splash this year. Ships leaving from Orlando, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, and Tampa – heading to the Caribbean, Mexico, and Central America – top the list of AAA cruise bookings for Spring Break. Cruises sailing to Alaska, Canada, Northern Europe, and the Persian Gulf are also seeing a spike in popularity.
Top Spring Break Destinations
- Cancun and Riviera Maya
- Mexico City
- Nassau, Bahamas
- Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
- Montego Bay, Jamaica
- San Juan, Puerto Rico
- Paris, France
- London, England
- Amsterdam, Netherlands
- Rome, Italy
- Barcelona, Spain
- Papua New Guinea
- Danube River
USA Hot Spots
- Las Vegas
- New York City
- San Francisco
- New Orleans
AAA Inspector Pro Tips: Spring Break
AAA Diamonds Inspectors know a thing or two about travel. They log thousands of miles every year, inspecting hotels and restaurants, verifying the 4Cs of AAA Diamonds: Cleanliness, Comfort, Cuisine, and Consistency. Here are first-person pro tips from AAA Inspectors on Spring Break travel.
“My family and I always spend a little extra time before we travel, researching excursions or day trips at our destination. If we’re going skiing, we look for snow mobile tours or local hot springs. For beach trips, we research snorkeling excursions, sightseeing tours, or dinner cruises.”
“Consider visiting a state that has a different spring break schedule. This year, my family is traveling cross country to Disneyland in California because it’s half the cost of Walt Disney World in Florida!”
“Research local events at your vacation destination. There might be a festival, concert, or other fun activity to experience!”
“I verify my hotel reservation by calling the front desk the day before my arrival. I confirm my reservation, have a staff member’s name, and make a new acquaintance who can likely be helpful during my stay.”
“I never book a non-refundable rate because those few dollars saved are lost if changes or cancellations must be made.”
“Ask for a room away from elevators (where people can congregate), at the end of the corridors (for less traffic), and on a top floor (to avoid noise from people above you).”
“Tip your servers and bartenders generously. They are working incredibly hard and have likely been slammed by customers for weeks. A smile, patience, and a good tip goes a long way toward improving their day AND making sure they come straight to you when you need to order something else!”
Last-Minute Spring Break Ideas
Fourteen percent of U.S. adults say they haven’t decided yet if they will travel for Spring Break, according to AAA’s survey. It’s not too late to make plans, but travelers may need to think outside the box. AAA recommends cities in colder climates where hotel rates are lower this time of year. If traveling with kids, look for hotels with indoor swimming pools. Research destinations that are within driving distance and offer free museums or outdoor attractions. AAA travel agents can help brainstorm other ideas and AAA members enjoy discounts on hotels, car rentals, and attractions.
Plan Ahead for Summer
The demand in Spring Break vacations signals a busy summer travel season. AAA travel agents say more people are booking trips farther in advance. AAA recommends making plans for summer sooner rather than later to avoid higher airline ticket prices and hotel rates. For inspiration, ideas, and itineraries, AAA offers a free online travel tool: Trip Canvas, where travelers can dream, research, and book.
The survey was conducted February 16-20, 2023 using a probability-based panel designed to be representative of the U.S. household population overall. The panel provides sample coverage of approximately 97% of the U.S. household population. Most surveys were completed online; consumers without Internet access were surveyed over the phone.
A total of 1,196 interviews were completed among U.S. adults, 18 years of age or older. The margin of error for the study overall is 3.8% at the 95% confidence level. Smaller subgroups have larger error margins.
Started in 1902 by automotive enthusiasts who wanted to chart a path for better roads in America and advocate for safe mobility, AAA has transformed into one of North America’s largest membership organizations. Today, AAA provides roadside assistance, travel, discounts, and financial and insurance services to enhance the life journey of more than 63 million members across North America, including more than 56 million in the United States. To learn more about all AAA has to offer or to become a member, visit AAA.com