Survey Reveals Canadians Optimistic About Travel Future

Majority of urban Canadians plan to travel in 2002
TORONTO, ON - February 27, 2002 - Urban Canadians are bullish on travel, according to a recent study by Expedia Canada Corp. of Canadians' attitudes regarding pleasure vacations. An Expedia Canada Corp./Ipsos-Reid study released today indicates that 81 per cent of Canadians surveyed in seven major markets consider vacations or pleasure trips a very important part of their overall quality of life and that 89 per cent are planning to take a vacation in 2002. Furthermore, when planning vacations, 80 per cent of these Canadians prefer to be in control of researching their own travel plans.

"The results of the survey confirm that urban Canadians want to travel and also have control over the entire experience from researching to booking their trips," said Stuart MacDonald, Managing Director, Expedia Canada Corp. "And with our launch of Expedia® Holiday Maker, we are giving Canadians exactly what they want - a service that allows travellers to custom-create their own vacation."

Throughout the study, urban Canadians polled continually emphasized and referred to their desire for choice, flexibility and timeliness of information when making travel arrangements. An overwhelming 81 per cent prefer pay-one-price vacations that have choice and flexibility to them, compared to 14 per cent who prefer set packages. Moreover, 72 per cent also indicated a preference for an independent web site with no direct ties to specific airlines or travel providers.

Survey Highlights Include:

  • In 2002, 89 per cent of Canadians in the seven major markets surveyed plan to take a vacation or pleasure trip (63 per cent in the first six months of 2002)
  • 59 per cent of these Canadians are either planning to (31 per cent) or seriously considering (28 per cent) travelling in the U.S. and 61 per cent are either planning to (33 per cent) or seriously considering (28 per cent) travelling elsewhere internationally with the number one destination being the Caribbean at 26 per cent, followed closely by Europe at 25 per cent
  • 80 per cent of Canadians surveyed prefer to research their own travel plans rather than relying solely on a travel agent
  • 81 per cent of these Canadian travellers prefer packages that have some choice and flexibility to them, compared to 14 per cent who prefer set package holidays
  • 72 per cent would prefer using an independent web site with no direct ties to particular airlines, travel companies or resorts in future vacation planning
  • 87 per cent indicate that in the future they will likely use the Internet to research vacations
  • 54 per cent indicate that in the future they will likely use the Internet to book and purchase vacations

Regional Highlights Include:

  • 91 per cent of Calgary residents prefer to be in control of researching their own travel plans, compared to 77 per cent in Edmonton or Toronto
  • 89 per cent of Edmonton residents prefer flexibility when purchasing pay-one-price package vacations, compared to 79 per cent of Ottawa and Winnipeg residents
  • Pay-one-price package vacations are the most popular with Torontonians with 55 per cent preferring to book all-inclusive vacations compared to 38 per cent of Winnipeg residents
  • In contrast, 63 per cent of Vancouver and Calgary residents prefer making separate arrangements for various aspects of their vacations
  • In the last two years, Toronto residents took the most all-inclusive vacations at 39 per cent taking at least one, while Calgary residents took the least at 13 per cent taking at least one

About the Survey
The survey was conducted on behalf of Expedia Canada Corp. by Ipsos-Reid by telephone with a random sample of 700 Canadians 18 years of age and older, who have taken at least one pleasure trip over the last two years (at least 80 kms. from their home and involved an overnight stay, excluding cottages/vacation properties that they own), or who are likely to do so in the next two years.

The interviews were distributed equally (100 each) in seven major markets - Toronto, Ottawa, Halifax, Edmonton, Calgary, Vancouver and Winnipeg. Interviewing was conducted from December 9 - 16, 2001. The overall (combined) results are weighted back into proportion. The overall results are accurate to within +/-3.8%, 95% of the time. Each market's (city's) results can be considered accurate to within +/-10%, 95% of the time.

About Expedia Canada Corp.
Expedia Canada Corp., a subsidiary of Expedia, Inc. (NASDAQ:EXPE), operates one of Canada's leading online travel agencies, Expedia.ca. To help Canadians plan and purchase travel, Expedia.ca provides the best combination of scheduled and charter flights, car and hotel reservations, vacation packages, destination and mapping information.

Expedia.ca customers are supported by an audited privacy policy, and customer support agents available 24 hours a day/seven days a week via a toll free number and email response.

 


Expedia, Expedia.ca, and the Airplane logo are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Expedia, Inc. in Canada, the U.S., and/or other countries. Other products and company names mentioned herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.

For more information, please contact:
Amy Gillespie, Edelman Public Relations, (416) 979-1120 ext. 312, amy.gillespie@edelman.com

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