The pandemic is affecting travel decisions more and more and leading most travelers — 66 percent — to utilize their own personal vehicles instead of traveling by mass transit or air.
The holiday poll of Cars.com queried over 1,000 Americans regarding their December travel intentions and contrasted the results with the 2020 Cars.com Thanksgiving travel survey.
“Many people are staying home for the holidays as suspected, and those who are traveling will continue to rely on their personal vehicle,” Cars.com Editor-in-Chief Jenni Newman said in the press release. “For most holiday travelers, the decision to drive is no longer primarily influenced by cost or convenience, but safety and security.”
Among the leading 2020 December holiday trends, Cars.com says that travelers are opting for cars compared to trains and planes. Sixty-six percent of travelers are harnessing personal cars, while just 30 percent are traveling by air and 11 percent are traveling by train. Furthermore, 9 percent are traveling via bus and 7 percent are traveling via taxis or ride-hailing.
The company also says that congestion is anticipated Wednesday and Thursday mornings, with Dec. 23 between 6 and 9 a.m. and Dec. 24 between 9 a.m. and noon Central as the most popular travel days.
It also says that the pandemic affects December travel to a greater extent than Thanksgiving. Sixty-six percent of Americans’ travel plans changed because of COVID-19 for December in contrast to 54 percent reported at Thanksgiving.
Furthermore, just 33 percent of Americans intend to travel for New Year’s compared to 41 percent when queried in October.
In separate pandemic travel news, a very infectious new coronavirus strain has led some nations to block U.K. travelers from entering. The new strain is reportedly spreading 70 percent quicker than past virus variants.
A surge in cases in London linked to the new strain has occurred, with recorded cases jumping 51 percent in the week to Sunday (Dec. 20).