NEW YORK, May 19, 2021 – Using data from its widely adopted Daily Travel Index, leading travel data company Arrivalist predicts that Americans will take 38.5 million road trips over Memorial Day weekend this year. Compared to last year, when many states issued stay-at-home orders amid the Covid-19 pandemic, road trip activity will be up a whopping 46% percent. Travel even is expected to exceed pre-Covid levels by 2.4% when compared to 2019 road trip activity.
“Americans continue to seek respite on the road,” said Cree Lawson, Arrivalist Founder and CEO. “Vaccination elation seems to be overpowering sticker shock at the gas pump. These latest projections are a promising sign for the travel industry that says, ‘We’re back.’ We continue to see outdoor attractions, from beaches to parks to mountains, hitting record levels of visitation and being filled to capacity in some cases. The fact that a spike in gas prices has yet to curb this trend makes us pretty enthusiastic about the prospects for the great outdoors having another strong summer and some downtown areas possibly seeing some recovery, too.”
The Daily Travel Index is a daily measure of road trip activity taken by residents of all 50 U.S. states, with volume indexed against the average daily volume of 2019 travelers. It was designed as a free online resource available on Arrivalist’s website to provide the travel industry with insights to help plot its path to recovery during the Covid-19 pandemic. Site visitors can compare visitation in 2021 to activity from the same period in 2019, not just the timeframe when travel slowed to a virtual standstill in 2020. Additionally, a customized Daily Travel Index is available to clients, which allows them to compare activity in their market to a nationwide index.
Download high-resolution JPEGs of the above charts here.
How the Data is Calculated
Arrivalist’s methodology is based on a representative balanced panel of GPS signals representing road trips taken specifically in cars (excluding travel by air). A trip is measured as one where the user has traveled a minimum of 50 miles and spent a minimum of two hours at the destination. Commuter travel or other frequently repeated trips—i.e., cargo deliveries or other reoccurring activities—are excluded from the Daily Travel Index.
Arrivalist is the leading location intelligence platform in the travel industry. The company uses multiple location datasets to provide actionable insights on consumer behavior, competitive share, media effectiveness, and market trends. Over 200 travel marketers, including 100 cities, 40 U.S. states, and four of the top 10 U.S. theme parks, use these insights to inform media strategy, operations, and destination development. Arrivalist is headquartered in New York City, with offices in San Francisco and Toronto.