Route 66 News

Road-trip resurgence

The Chicago Tribune is reporting what I’ve suspected: that more families are taking to the road for their destinations instead of flying.

It’s a resurgence fed by cheaper gas, childhood memories and a general reluctance to splurge by people who are fearful for their jobs, travel analysts said.

Others are fed up with air travel, preferring the grind of the road to delays and fees. The final straw for the Duliks: paying a total of $400 to redeem airline miles for a trip to Hawaii and then retrieving those miles when they had to cancel the outing.

It isn’t just anecdotal evidence that more people are flocking again to our highways:

Orlando felt the shift last year. During the first nine months of 2008, more out-of-state visitors drove to the central Florida tourist hub than flew — a reversal from previous years — Orlando/Orange County Convention & Visitors Bureau Inc. said.

AAA Chicago has seen a 25 percent surge so far this year in requests for TripTik, a mapping service for motorists plotting long car trips. Orlando is the top destination for its Chicago-area members this year, said Lisa Duryea, district manager for the automobile club.

It’s not surprising the airlines are hurting. The advantage it once had for speedier travel has been largely erased by the security hassles, flight delays and tack-on fees. And during a weak economy, travelers are rediscovering that road trips are easier on a budget.

Naturally, Route 66 should benefit from this trend.

2 thoughts on “Road-trip resurgence

  1. Trevor Hilton

    I love to road trip! For me, getting there is half of the fun!

    Unfortunately, my wife goes to sleep if she’s in a car too long. She’s from Malaysia, and is used to almost everything she needs being on the same block.

    I’m trying to show her the joys of topping a hill and seeing a beautiful vista spread out in front of her. And of stopping along the way to see interesting sights before we get to our destination.

    But I’m not having much success so far.

  2. MrZip66

    We’re in the biggest economic crisis since the great depression when the world traveled route 66, saved their hard earned money, and from that sprung the greatest generation that the world ever knew. We’ll get there again. This is a good thing for route 66, and good for the world. We’ll survive the economic mess we’re in become stronger because of it, because we’ve learned that spending our today’s for our future doesn’t work. It’s going to make us stronger

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