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Average Cost of an International Vacation

If you’re planning on taking a trip overseas, it may be time to start saving — the average international trip costs nearly $5,000, according to new research; but that’s not stopping travelers.

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A survey of 2,000 Americans who travel internationally looked at their travel habits and found that despite the cost, the average respondent has been on six international trips in the last five years alone, with a third saying they’ve been on even more (34%).

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If time is money, many make the most of that, too, with one in eight vacationing internationally for upwards of three weeks at a time.

Conducted by OnePoll for Delta Vacations, the survey found that for international vacations, Americans have spent the most time in Europe and South America over the past five years and the least time in Antarctica and Africa.

Don’t count those continents out on future trips, though, as most respondents have a “bucket list” of international destinations they’d like to visit (55%). One in five of those who do say there are at least 10 places on that list (21%).

People shared some of their fondest memories of traveling to other countries like “getting engaged on the beach in Costa Rica,” “climbing the Great Wall of China” and eating “an incredible fish pie at a hole-in-the-wall in Edinburgh.”

More than a quarter admit they like to spend time doing “tourist” activities (27%) while 24% enjoy spending time among locals — and 40% enjoy a mix of both.

Most of those surveyed are also interested in learning about a foreign country’s culture while they’re there (77%).

To help prepare themselves, 50% said they downloaded a language app to try to familiarize themselves with the language of the country before visiting.

However, 40% of Americans admitted that traveling to another country makes them feel nervous.

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This may be because they’ve run into issues at their destination such as booking accommodations in an undesirable location (48%), booking reservations incorrectly (38%) or having difficulty finding transportation (33%).

Nearly half said they’ve been scared or nervous to visit an international destination before but put these fears aside and went anyway (48%), leaving nearly all of these respondents glad they took the chance (93%).

“Traveling abroad is definitely worth the experience,” said Kama Winters, president of Delta Vacations. “It allows you to immerse yourself in other cultures, try new things, and expand your perspective. It can be an intimidating process and that’s why I recommend two things: use a trusted travel provider to curate the recommendations and sign up for an airline loyalty and rewards program to earn and redeem miles while you travel — put that expertise and those miles to good use!”

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Making sure they get everything right can be a lot of pressure, which may be why 44% of travelers prefer to leave the trip booking to professionals like travel agents or tour operators.

If respondents had to choose their top picks for a comfortable flight, they’d opt for more comfortable seats (40%) and more meals or snacks (36%) of better quality and quantity (34%).

“We believe in having our customers’ backs every step of the way and offer our expertise and service to support them,” Winters said. “Avoid spending hours online researching every aspect of your trip and use expertly built sample itineraries, recommended hotels and curated experiences that take any vacation to the next level.”



  1. Foreign plug adapters — 47%
  2. Day bag — 42%
  3. A map — 41%
  4. Debit/credit card — 41%
  5. Reusable water bottle — 41%
  6. Portable charger — 40%
  7. Translation app/dictionary — 40%
  8. Cash — 36%
  9. Reusable bags — 25%
  10. Large suitcase — 22%



  1. Watch TV/movies — 50%
  2. Listen to music — 48%
  3. Read — 45%
  4. Play games — 41%
  5. Do puzzles — 38%
  6. Sleep — 37%
  7. Talk to others near me — 31%
  8. Color — 31%
  9. Listen to podcasts — 29%
  10. Look out the window — 23%


Survey methodology:

This random double-opt-in survey of 2,000 people who travel internationally was commissioned by Delta Vacations between Jan. 30 and Jan. 31, 2023. It was conducted by market research company OnePoll, whose team members are members of the Market Research Society and have corporate membership to the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) and the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research (ESOMAR).




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Karen LeBlanc

Karen LeBlanc is a freelance writer living in Orlando, Florida with many published bylines in magazines, newspapers, and multimedia sites. As a professional lifestyle writer, Karen specializes in art, architecture, design, home interiors and personality profiles. Karen is the writer, producer and host of the streaming series, The Design Tourist ( that brings viewers a global dose of design inspiration with episodes featuring the latest looks and trends from the world’s premiere design events and shows. She also publishes a quarterly magazine on design travel that you can read by clicking the link: Her journalism background includes seven years on-air experience as a TV news reporter and anchor covering a range of issues from education to politics. Her educational credentials include a Master of Arts in Mass Communications from Northeast Louisiana University and a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Louisiana State University. Throughout her career, Karen has written and produced dozens of documentaries and videos for educational, commercial, corporate, and governmental clients and appeared in many TV and video productions as a professional host.

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Karen LeBlanc

Karen LeBlanc is a travel host and writer with a popular travel show, The Design Tourist, and a companion lifestyle blog. As a widely published travel journalist and content creator, Karen is a member of the North American Travel Journalists Association. She also serves as the Design and Travel editor of the national lifestyle magazine, LaPalme. Karen believes that every destination has a story to tell through its local art, architecture, culture, and craft. This immersive creative exploration begins with authentic accommodations where the narrative of place unfolds through art, accessories, accouterments, furnishings, fixtures, and food. 

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