Travel activities and motivations survey — U.S. Travel Market

Golfing While on Trips of One or More Nights

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A Profile Report — March 19, 2007
Executive summary

Over the last two years, 8.2% (18,189,169) of adult Americans played golf while on an out-of-town, overnight trip of one or more nights. Of those who golfed, 33.4% (6,067,369) reported that golfing was the main reason for taking at least one trip.

Those who golfed while on a trip tend to be more affluent than the average U.S. Pleasure Traveler with higher household incomes and university education. They are more likely to be male, married and over-represented among those 55 to 64. The incidence of Golfers is higher in the northern U.S. and New England states indicating that on average, Golfers live closer to Canada than the average U.S. Pleasure Traveler.

Consistent with this fact, Golfers have been more likely than the average U.S. Pleasure Traveler to have taken a trip to Canada in the past two years, and especially trips to Ontario and British Columbia. In relative terms, they are over-represented among U.S. travelers to Prince Edward Island, Alberta, British Columbia and the NWT.

An examination of the other outdoor vacation activities undertaken by Golfers reveals that this sector is quite active in many other types of outdoor activities and especially winter sports (e.g., downhill skiing). They are also frequently active in other competitive sports (e.g., tennis) and strenuous physical activities such as cycling, fitness and jogging. This is consistent with the fact that Golfers are more likely to take pleasure trips to be challenged physically and feel physically energized, despite being over represented among those 55 to 64. On the other hand, they are less likely than the average U.S. Pleasure Traveler to seek intellectual stimulation while on a pleasure trip.

While on a trip, Golfers are also more interested than Non-Golfers in events related to sports (e.g., professional sports) and may be responsive to travel sports packages. They prefer luxury accommodations, fine dining and spas and are more likely than the average U.S. Pleasure Traveler to have participated in wine, beer and food tastings while on a trip.

Golfers are most likely to have consulted the Internet for travel information and frequently book travel online. Relative to the average U.S. Pleasure Traveler, Golfers are heavier users of a variety of information sources concerning travel, and especially information from trade, travel and sports shows and travel guide books (e.g., Fodor's).

Their media preferences are clearly oriented towards sports magazines, sports radio and television programming and sports-related Internet sites. As such, sports-related media are likely to be the most efficient means by which to reach those who golf while on a trip.