Family Outdoor Vacations Build Lasting Memories

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This week's "Great Outdoors Week" events offer prime opportunity to plan summer vacations, says U.S. Travel Association.

Trips that center around the great outdoors are among people's favorite vacation memories.

“When we ask people about favorite vacation experiences, nature and the great outdoors come up again and again,” said Roger Dow, president and CEO of the U.S. Travel Association.

This week, families can gain inspiring vacation ideas through the American Recreation Coalition’s Great Outdoors Week, sponsored in part by the U.S. Travel Association. The week culminates with National Get Outdoors Day this Saturday. A new Travel Effect survey found outdoor vacations to be among the most memorable family travel experiences.

“When we ask people about favorite vacation experiences, nature and the great outdoors come up again and again,” said Roger Dow, president and CEO of the U.S. Travel Association, which released the family travel survey as part of the Travel Effect campaign. “Families that participate on Saturday will get to try traditional and non-traditional outdoor activities – and we hope the experience will inspire them to include nature and the outdoors in their next vacation.”

The survey found that the great outdoors creates lasting family vacation memories. Specific findings included:

  • Outdoor vacations provide the adventure that kids seek: When it comes to family vacations, children are eager to experience new things. More than two-thirds of children surveyed believe that a family vacation is an opportunity to try activities that they cannot do at home. When asked to identify their favorite memory from their last family vacation, more children (42%) selected “what they did” than any other category.
  • Trips that center around the great outdoors are among favorite vacation memories: When asked to share their earliest vacation memory, going to the beach was specifically cited by many adults. Similarly, when asked about their favorite travel memory, children remembered going to the beach, going swimming, playing in the ocean, and seeing nature or animals.
  • Family vacation memories last a lifetime: Most adults surveyed (62%) said their earliest memories were of family vacations taken when they were between ages five and 10, and they remember childhood trips more clearly than school events or birthday celebrations.

For more information on Great Outdoors Week, sponsored in part by the U.S. Travel Association, visit: http://www.funoutdoors.com/node/view/2986. A list of supporters is available here: http://www.funoutdoors.com/files/Contributors%20Poster.pdf.

For more details on the “Travel Creates Memories” study of more than 2,500 adults and 1,100 youth, conducted by Harris Interactive, visit http://www.traveleffect.com.

About Travel Effect

Travel Effect is a campaign of the U.S. Travel Association, the national, non-profit organization representing all components of the travel industry that generates $2 trillion in economic output and supports 14.6 million jobs. U.S. Travel's mission is to increase travel to and within the United States.

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April Nichols
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