Tight Household Finances Mean Summers Spent at Home

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ACCC survey of budget-conscious Americans finds just half will go away this summer. Few families have increased their spending over last year.

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Consumers are choosing to save their money or pay off bills instead of spending it on expensive vacations. We educate our consumers to know that it’s all right to spend, as long as you’re spending within a well-defined budget.

Amid a sluggish economic recovery, many budget-conscious Americans are choosing to save their money rather than spend it on summer travel, according to a recent survey by American Consumer Credit Counseling. Over 40 percent of respondents will not go away on vacation this summer, and only about a third will increase vacation spending over last year.

Of the nearly 1,800 consumers who participated in the most recent ACCC web poll at ConsumerCredit.com, just 11 percent said they’ve budgeted more than $1,000 toward their summer vacation plans. Seventeen percent plan to spend less than $250, and 43 percent will not be traveling at all.

“Consumers are choosing to save their money or pay off bills instead of spending it on expensive vacations,” said Steve Trumble, President and CEO of American Consumer Credit Counseling, which is based in Newton, Mass. “Many people are still finding ways to take smaller trips that won’t break the bank. We educate our consumers to know that it’s all right to spend, as long as you’re spending within a well-defined budget.”

A little more than a third of households – 36 percent – have increased their spending since last year. Twenty-seven percent are spending less, and 37 percent of respondents said their spending is unchanged.

“Americans are exercising more fiscal discipline than they did before the recession struck,” Trumble said. “Even as the economy has begun to recover, those who have struggled with debt in the past are being very careful not to spend more than they can afford.”

Nearly half the survey respondents came from families with just one or two members. Only 15 percent belonged to families of five or more members.

The vacation spending poll was the latest in a series of ACCC web surveys for 2012 that focus on a variety of financial education, budgeting and planning topics. American Consumer Credit Counseling’s certified and experienced counselors offer a variety of financial education, counseling and debt management services to help consumers achieve long-term financial health and stability.

ACCC is a 501(c)3 organization, that provides free credit counseling, bankruptcy counseling, and housing counseling to consumers nationwide in need of financial literacy education and money management. For more information, contact ACCC:

        • For credit counseling, call 800-769-3571
        • For bankruptcy counseling. call 866-826-6924
        • For housing counseling, call 866-826-7180
        • For more information on financial education workshops in New England, call 800-769-3571 x708
        • Or visit us online at ConsumerCredit.com

About American Consumer Credit Counseling
American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to empowering consumers to achieve financial health through education, counseling, and debt management. ACCC provides individuals with practical solutions for solving financial problems and recognizes that consumers’ financial difficulties are often not the result of poor spending habits, but more frequently from extenuating circumstances beyond their control. As one of the nation’s leading providers of financial education and credit counseling services, ACCC works with consumers to help them with the best plan of action to reduce their debt and regain financial stability. ACCC is accredited by the Better Business Bureau and holds an A+ rating. It is also a member of the Association of Independent Consumer Credit Counseling Agencies. For more information or to access free financial education resources log on to ConsumerCredit.com or visit TalkingCentsBlog.com.

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