Driving vs. Delays: The Average Maryland Traveler would Opt to Drive for 5 Hours rather than Take a One-hour Flight

Originally published by Family Destinations Guide.

From weather disruptions to computer problems to crew shortages, Americans are once again caught in travel limbo.

For the second time in a month, thousands of flights were delayed or canceled across the US last week, and travelers have been warned to expect more problems – even a breakdown at a smaller regional airport can have a domino effect across the country.

A survey of 3,000 by FamilyDestinationsGuide.com asked travelers a hypothetical question: ‘How far would you be prepared to drive to your chosen destination rather than fly for one hour?’ 

Travelers flying out of Maryland airports would opt to drive for 5 hours and 6 minutes (on average) rather than take a one-hour flight, given the current uncertaintiesThe results indicate a growing frustration with the current airport conditions. 

FamilyDestinationsGuide.com has created an interactive map showing how far travelers across the country would be prepared to drive to avoid airports chaos.

The survey also found that almost half (48%) of travelers say they have put off air travel until the current disruptions have been sorted. And when it comes to planning further ahead, 74% said they are more likely to road trip this summer rather than fly to a typical vacation destination.

Interestingly, over half said they would be prepared to pay a premium for flight tickets if it would guarantee there would be no delays. Of those who said they would be prepared to pay more, the average traveler would pay 32% more than the standard ticket price. Therefore, given the average fare is around $397, the average traveler would pay $127 to get where they want to go on time.

Finally, respondents who have recently been affected by the travel disruptions were asked to rate their frustration on a scale of 1-10. The average respondent rated theirs at a solid 8 out of 10.

“The current flight disruptions will likely continue through the rest of the year, so it might be wise to consider planning your trip by car instead of air. While flying might be faster in theory, the freedom and flexibility of hitting the open road in a car can allow for a more personal and memorable travel experience,” says Rose Ackermann, Editor-in-Chief of FamilyDestinationsGuide.com.