From January through July 2021 AAA Washington data shows steady growth in the number of travel purchases by Washingtonians.
- Since the beginning of the year, cumulative travel bookings are up 193% compared to the same period last year: down only 21% from 2019.
- AAA Washington clients who buy cruises and tours started making plans closer to their departure dates. Currently, they are booking trips seven months in advance. Back in January, these purchases happened a year or more before travel.
- The opposite is true for all online car, hotel, and air reservations. In March, 50% of these bookings happened on the day of travel. Now, same-day and next-day online reservations combined, account for only 11% of car rentals and 20% of hotel stays. Airline reservations are booked an average of 62 days before travel.
- The average daily car rental rate is $91.36, up 29% from 2019. The reason? Rental car companies must replenish fleets pared down during the pandemic but few vehicles are available. Production of the computer chips needed in new cars stopped when factories shut down due to COVID-19.
- AAA Washington data reveals Monday as the most popular day to book a hotel room, Tuesday for car rentals. The most popular time to take these trips is Thursday through Saturday or Sunday.