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Fifteen Percent of Americans Financing Summer Vacations With Credit Cards
9 Jun
If you’re going on vacation with your family this summer, chances are you’re going to pay for it one of two ways: with savings, or with a credit card.

A recent survey showed that 80% of Americans will pay for at least some of their summer vacation with savings this year. Fifteen percent said they’ll put it on a credit card. Another 14% said they would use credit card rewards or miles to cover their summer vacation expenses.

Not everyone is going on vacation

Only 44% of those surveyed said they were taking a vacation at all this summer. And most of those who are don’t plan to go into debt to finance their vacations. Sixty-seven percent of vacationers said they’ll pay off their vacation costs within one month, while 11% expected to take upwards of four months to pay off their vacation expenses.

Keeping costs under control

Credit card experts recommend creating budgets, tracking spending, and looking for low-interest credit cards as a way to keep holiday costs under control. Another way to save is to get a 0% interest balance transfer credit card and transfer any lingering debt over to that.

Credit card rewards are rewarding

Using credit card rewards to score free airline tickets, hotel stays, and other travel perks is a great way to make the most of having a great travel credit card. College graduates and affluent households are the most likely to use credit card rewards to pay for summer vacations, according to the survey.

Other findings

The survey also showed that older folks are more likely to put vacations on credit cards. Millennials, perhaps surprisingly, are the least likely to pay for a vacation with a credit card. That might be because young people are less likely to be comfortable taking on debt than older people are. In fact, millennials have been shown to be more reluctatnt to use credit cards than other groups, by far.

Regionally, folks in the Midwest are the most fiscally responsible when it comes to paying off debt. Seventy-six percent of them plan to pay off all their travel expenses within one month—the most of any other area in the country.

The summer vacation survey was conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates and included responses from 1,000 adults in the United States. It was done by telephone interview in May 2016, in both English and Spanish.

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