Travellers hate baggage and seat selection fees – study

Airlines charging passengers for baggage and seat selection are among the most annoying expenses for global travellers, a new study has revealed.

According to Expedia’s 2014 Vacation Spending Index, 36% of travellers dislike having to pay extra for baggage, while 27% baulk at the idea of paying for seat selection. Taxes (41%) were the most unpopular charge among travellers, while booking fees (34%) and resort/hotel fees (25%) also ranked highly.

71% of travellers start saving for their holiday in the year prior to their departure
71% of travellers start saving for their holiday in the year prior to their departure

In terms of things that travellers are happy to spend their money on, Expedia’s study revealed that a hotel in a desirable location (39%) was the top choice, followed by a direct flight, rather than connecting (34%), a room with a view (29%) and a hotel with a swimming pool (28%).

And travellers appear to be cautious with their money, actively seeking out deals and saving up in advance of their next holiday. The study found that 87% of travellers seek out special offers, the most popular of which are flight promotions (49%), seasonal sales (46%) and package deals (43%).

Seventy-one of travellers start saving for their holiday in the year prior to their departure. Of these, 31% begin saving at least a full year in advance, but 29% do not save at all.

“With the Vacation Spending Index, Expedia sought to take a look at how cultural forces impact how consumers save and spend money in regards to travel,” said John Morrey, vice president & general manager of Expedia.com. “These insights make us a more intelligent global travel company, in terms of how we present different options to different audiences, ultimately allowing us to serve our customers better.”

Notable regional comparisons include the fact that Norwegian travellers spend the most on a week-long domestic holiday (approx. US$1,256) and Thais the least (US$356). But Japanese travellers spend the most on an international holiday (US$2,777), while the French budget just US$1,361 for a week abroad – the lowest of any country.

Mexican (89%) and Indian (85%) travellers are the most inclined to save for their holidays in advance, with Japanese (53%) and Dutch (55%) less likely to the same.

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