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Hottest Domestic and International 2014 Summer Destinations

by Lux Joseph 9. August 2014

The summer is coming to an end, but there is still time to enjoy some of the hottest travel destinations of 2014. Orlando and Las Vegas are the top two most popular summer destinations according to the 2014 Hot Spots for Summer survey. Orlando came out on top with a 17 percent share of responses and Las Vegas maintained the second spot with 14 percent.

“Orlando and Las Vegas remain on top as affordable, family-friendly and fun destinations," said Zane Kerby, ASTA President and CEO. "They are also the type of destinations where a travel agent can enhance your trip from helping navigate Orlando’s theme parks, to making sure you pick the right Vegas hotel that matches your unique needs."

Following Orlando and Las Vegas, the other top ten domestic cities are Miami (4 percent), San Francisco (4 percent), Los Angeles (3 percent), New York City (2 percent), San Diego (2 percent), Honolulu (2 percent), Washington DC (2 percent) and New Orleans (2 percent).  New Orleans is new to the list, moving Seattle out of the top ten.

While remaining at the top, Orlando and Las Vegas have been slowly decreasing in response share for several years, as have most of the other top ten destinations. Ten years ago the top ten destinations represented 75% of the responses, and today it represents 51 percent. This year, over 100 different domestic destinations received at least one vote as a hot summer destination, reflecting the consumer trend for more unique vacation experiences.

When asked about 2014 state destinations, Florida again topped the list for the 2014 summer season with a 23 percent response rate. Rounding out the top five state destinations for summer travel are Nevada (13 percent), California (12 percent), New York (11 percent) and Hawaii (11 percent). As with the cities, the percentage share of responses is down for the top states, except for Hawaii which had modest growth in response share.

Do you have more than a few days free this summer? Are you looking to travel abroad? London and Rome as the two most popular summer destinations according to the annual Hot Spots for Summer survey. London received a 9 percent share of votes followed by Rome with an 8 percent share.

 Over 150 cities made the hot list, with the top ten cities accounting for 37 percent of the responses. Beyond the typical tourist cities, travel agents say they are also planning many trips to many unique destinations like Yerevan, Armenia and Johannesburg, South Africa for this summer with both cited by agents as hot locations.

In addition to London and Rome, Paris (8 percent), Cancun (5 percent), Punta Cana (3 percent), Barcelona (1 percent), Riviera Maya (1 percent), Amsterdam (1 percent), Madrid (1 percent), and Montego Bay (1 percent) round out the top ten international cities. Amsterdam and Madrid are new to the top ten pushing out Venice and Athens.

For countries/regions, Italy remains at the top with an 18 percent share of the votes. Mexico (11 percent) moves up to second place after two years in third and fourth place. The other countries/regions in the top five include France (11percent), United Kingdom (11 percent) and the Caribbean (8 percent). The same five countries/regions have remained in the top five for over eight years and represent 61% of the votes.

Commercial Medical Escorts utilizes a travel agent to make all their travel arrangements. We believe this adds cost savings to our clients, the most up to date travel information, and an educated individual in the area of medical escorts. We encourage travelers who would like to experience these hot spots to find a helpful travel agent who specializes in the destinations that they dream of visiting.

Getting Stuck in the Airport

by Lux Joseph 29. June 2014

Travel these days can be fraught with inconveniences, lost baggage and delayed flights among the most familiar of travel woes. But, if you are going to be spending a few “unexpected” hours at an airport, where is it best to be? A recent survey of ASTA travel agents found that domestically, the best airports to be “stuck in” are Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and Orlando International Airport. Both airports received an 8-percent share of the responses.

As the "world’s busiest passenger airport," Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson offers travelers more than 200 shopping and dining outlets and a 24,000-square foot executive conference center. Orlando, meanwhile, provides travelers numerous shopping and dining outlets, even an upscale eatery for those with money to burn as well as time to kill.

With an abundance of technological services, including numerous self-service business centers and rapid-charge stations, Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport came in third with 6.3 percent of the vote. Las Vegas' McCarran International Airport, with its art gallery, aviation museum and gaming opportunities ranked fourth with 6 percent.

Tied for fifth place (5.4%) were Charlotte Douglas International Airport, with its free WiFi and memorable white rocking chairs in which to while away the hours, and Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, which is home to a 4-story tall model of a Brachiosaurus. Need we say more?

Best Domestic Airports to be "Stuck In" 

  

  

Share of total response 

1

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport

8.4%

2

Orlando International Airport

8.4%

3

Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport

6.3%

4

McCarran International (Las Vegas)

6.0%

5

Charlotte Douglas International Airport

5.4%

5

O’Hare International Airport (Chicago)

5.4%

Most of our nurses and physicians when flying connect through Atlanta, Charlotte, and Chicago. When traveling with patients it is important that we provide a significant amount of connection time. A traveler who is traveling on their own may chance the 50 minute legal connection, but during a commercial medical escort, it is important to allow adequate connection time for wheelchairs, customs, and possible terminal changes.

Best International Airports

On the international front, Amsterdam’s Schiphol received the largest number of responses with 23.6 percent. How could it not with a wedding chapel, an array of "snooze" chairs and a casino? Even the restrooms are fun with scenery to make you feel that you are in the heart of Amsterdam.

London’s BAA Heathrow Airport (21.7%), is a shopper’s dream with personal shopping services as well as the shopping collection service (available only to those traveling within the European Union). Tied for third were Frankfort and Singapore’s airports (6.7%). Travelers who find themselves delayed at Singapore’s Changi Airport can take in a movie, play Xbox or, if the mood strikes, head for the nap lounge, while those at Frankfort Airport with a bit more time on their hands can take advantage of the on-site hairdresser, tailor or dry cleaners.

Paris, Charles de Gaulle Airport offers those with an unplanned delay a chance to track down and meet Merhan Karimi Nasseri, the man upon which the movie, The Terminal, was based. Meanwhile, business travelers who find themselves with a lay-over at Hong Kong International Airport (4.5%) can take advantage or airport-wide, free WiFi service.

Best International Airports to be "Stuck In"

 

 

Share of
total response

1

Schiphol Airport (Amsterdam)

23.6%

2

BAA Heathrow (London)

21.7%

3

Frankfurt Airport (Germany)

6.7%

3

Changi Airport (Singapore)

6.7%

4

Charles de Gaulle Airport (Paris)

4.8%

5

Hong Kong International Airport

4.5%

When making travel arrangements, sometimes it’s better to have too much time during a connection than not enough. With the increased number of amenities being added to these airports you will always find something to occupy your time. It’s every traveller’s worst nightmare: having to make a connecting flight, missing said connection and having to scramble to re-work travel plans. Keep this in mind when making your next travel arrangements.


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