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New AAA Travel Poll

Nearly a Third of West Virginians Plan to Travel More This Summer than Last

Many say it will be the first significant summer travel since the pandemic

 

CHARLESTON, W. Va. — A new poll by AAA Travel finds West Virginians making big plans to get away this summer despite the highest gas prices in years. In fact, 27 percent of residents surveyed say they are planning to travel more this summer than last summer, and many say it will be their first significant summer travel since before the pandemic.

“The results of this new AAA Travel poll indicate that COVID concerns have eased dramatically and the majority of West Virginia residents are making plans to get away, despite gas prices,” says Lori Weaver Hawkins, public affairs manager, AAA Blue Grass. “While domestic travel will dominate, it is interesting to note the number of people making plans to travel internationally as well. That’s something we have not seen since 2019.”

Over half of those surveyed say they are planning at least one trip, with nearly 40 percent saying they are planning multiple trips.

By the Numbers
West Virginians are planning more getaways with summer on the horizon. The risk of COVID is taking a backseat to managing the economic impact of high gas prices. Overall, results of the AAA Travel poll found that:

  • 55 percent of West Virginia residents are planning a trip of 50 miles or more this summer.
  • 27 percent of residents are planning to travel more than last summer.
  • 16 percent of West Virginians are planning their first significant summer travel since before the pandemic.
  • 39 percent of West Virginia residents are planning multiple trips.
  • Of those traveling, 17 percent are planning international travel.

Gas Prices
Twenty-seven percent of West Virginia residents say gas prices were not even a consideration in their travel planning, but:

  • Over half―55%―say they are taking fewer or shorter trips because of gas prices
  • Nearly 20% say they will adjust their budget for lodging or dining out because of gas prices

For those who are staying home, more than 60 percent cite gas prices as the biggest factor influencing that decision.

COVID Concerns
Of the significant number of West Virginians planning to travel more this summer than last:

  • Nearly 40 percent say it is because their personal COVID concerns have eased
  • More than 20 percent say it is because travel concerns have eased at their destinations

Methodology:

The AAA Travel survey of 635 residents in West Virginia was conducted April 8-9, 2022 by Public Policy Polling. The survey has a margin of error of +/-3.9%.