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Discriminating Pet Travelers: Poll Reveals Their Preferences And Habits
By: Kim Salerno
There are more pets than people in the U.S. In fact, Americans own more pets than ever before. Approximately
62% of American households now own a pet, which is the highest level in recorded history. Approximately 78% of
them are hitting the road and skies each year with their furry friends. This growing market has made itself known
and the travel industry has responded as more and more accommodations across the U.S. are rolling out the red
carpet for these traveling pets. To better understand the demands and habits of this booming market, an online
survey of pet travelers was conducted and the results are in!
When it comes to planning pet travel online, over 89% of the 2,012 pet travelers polled indicated that they do
indeed go online and browse the websites of pet friendly accommodations. However, only 27% of respondents are
comfortable booking their pet friendly accommodations online. Instead, most respondents prefer to call to book
their room so that they can alert the lodging that they are traveling with their pet. Even given the growing number
of pet friendly accommodations, you may be surprised to find that 34% of respondents have at some point snuck
their pet into accommodations during their travels. Aside from the lodging not being pet friendly, other reasons for
the sneak-ins include; their pet was too big, the accommodation did not accept their type of pet, cost was too
much extra for their pet.
Not all pet friendly accommodations are created equal and pet travelers are well aware of this. A whopping 86% of
respondents reported that they actually compare pet amenities offered by accommodations when selecting where
to stay. On the top of the list of preferred amenities is pet sitting services. Although most accommodations don't
offer these services themselves, they do provide guests with a directory of local pet sitters that will come to the
lodging room to watch pet guests while their humans step out. Other preferred pet amenities that are at the top of
discriminating pet travelers lists include; clean-up bags (23%) pet recreation listings (11%), in-room feed bowls
(7%), and pet walking services (7%). It appears that pet travelers are willing to pay for these special amenities.
Over 90% of respondents would pay extra to accommodate their animal companions with most willing to pay up to
$50 per night and some actually willing to pay over $50 extra per night for their pets.
It is apparent that people love to vacation with their pets and care a great deal about accommodating them.
Eighty-eight percent of respondents have stayed at a pet friendly accommodation at least once in the past 2 years.
And pet travelers aren't afraid to venture far from home. Over 66% travel anywhere from 50 to 500 miles from
America's love affair with their pets is evident in their habits and preferences when it comes to traveling with their
furry and four-legged companions. Their mounting numbers and financial muscle is destined to continue to raise the
bar when it comes to pet travel.
About the Author:
Kim Salerno is the President & Founder of TRIPSwithPETS.com. She founded the pet travel site in 2003 and is an
expert in the field of pet travel. Her popular pet travel site features pet friendly hotels & accommodations across
the United States, along with other helpful pet travel resources. Her mission is to ensure that pets are welcome,
happy, and safe in their travels.