Poll: Families cancel vacations, summer camp because of inflation

A May 2022 view of the Montgomery County Courthouse in Clarksville, Tennessee. (Photo by Todd DeFeo/The DeFeo Groupe)

(The Center Square) – A majority of surveyed American families are worried about inflation and are changing their summer vacation plans because of it, according to newly released polling data.

The poll, from Echelon Insights, found that “75% of parents say they are concerned about the rising cost of everyday purchases like food or gas.”

A steady stream of inflation data has shown prices on a range of goods and services, particularly energy and food prices, have hammered American families trying to make ends meet.

The survey also asked, “Has recent inflation (increases in the price of gas, groceries, etc.) caused you to change any of your plans for what your children will do this summer?”

In response, 57% of those surveyed said yes, and 37% said no.

On top of that, 51% of families said they “changed or canceled plans for a family trip” because of inflation while 41% said they “changed or canceled activities for my children like camp or extracurricular activities.”

Another 26% said, “I won’t be able to stay home with my children because I need to work extra hours.”

Heading into Memorial Day Weekend, the behavior changes could affect tourist economies with a ripple effect across the economy as Americans stay home. The survey found that 30% of Americans plan to “mostly stay home.”

Part of that hesitation comes from gas prices, which have hit record highs every day for the past two weeks, according to AAA.

“The national average for a gallon of gas has not fallen for nearly a month. Gasoline has either remained flat or risen every day since April 24 and has set a new record daily since May 10,” the group said. “That was the day gas eclipsed the previous record high of $4.33, set earlier this year on March 11. The national average for a gallon of gasoline is now $4.59 and all 50 states are above $4 per gallon.”

The Bureau of Labor Statistics most recent inflation data showed food and gas prices have soared since Biden took office.

“The all items index increased 8.3 percent for the 12 months ending April, a smaller increase than the 8.5-percent figure for the period ending in March,” BLS said. “The all items less food and energy index rose 6.2 percent over the last 12 months. The energy index rose 30.3 percent over the last year, and the food index increased 9.4 percent, the largest 12-month increase since the period ending April 1981.”

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