The Brian Lehrer Show

It's Not a Trip Unless...

Wednesday, July 02, 2014

Unless you get lost. Unless you hear a different language. Unless you drive on a dirt road. Unless... what?

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Please Trip Responsibly

Wednesday, July 02, 2014

We hear from the co-director of the Center for Responsible Travel on how to negotiate ethical, environmental and cultural concerns. 

Comments [5]

Transportation Nation

Cruise ships: A Luxury for the Rest of Us

Friday, January 25, 2013

Cruisers just off a ship reflect on why they decided on a cruise and whether it was worth the money. (Photo by Jolie Puidokas/Marketplace)

(Interview by Jeremy Hobson -- Marketplace) For many well-heeled Americans, the idea of a luxury vacation is a fancy hotel or an expensive flight to an exotic destination. And for the wealthiest among us, taking a break means private jets and pricey beach resorts. But for more than 10 million Americans annually, their luxury vacation means a berth on a cruise ship.

"The United States is still clearly the No. 1... market for cruisers in the world," Royal Caribbean president and CEO Adam Goldstein told Marketplace. "There are about 20 million people a year in the world taking a cruise right now and 11 or 12 [million] come from the United States."

Cruise ships weren't always so mainstream. In 1970, Goldstein said only 500,000 people took a cruise every year.

"It's definitely become more available, when I got into the business in 1988 we aspired to be a mainstream vacation," Goldstein said. "It's definitely become more accessible but what the last few years of challenges, economically, have posed to us is the need to really get across the value message of what is included in the cruise purchase."

According to industry research firm Cruise Market Watch, the ticket price for a typical cruise passenger is $1,311. When you combine onboard expenses and incidentals, the price tag rises to $1,711.

That's not inexpensive, but the the average American family will spend $4,000 on a vacation, including airfare, according to a 2010 American Express survey.

"First of all, we draw pretty broadly, obviously we offer upscale vacations," Goldstein said. "We are looking at household income of probably something like $75,000 and up generally speaking. The vast majority of our cruisers I would say would be middle and upper-middle class."

[Also from Marketplace: Fisher Island: America's most exclusive zip code.]


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The Brian Lehrer Show

Vacation Sabotage

Friday, July 06, 2012

New York Times reporter Matt Richtel (and author of the forthcoming "Floodgate") talks about what he learned from an unsuccessful vacation about disconnecting and getting away.

Listeners: How do you get away? What are your rules for a relaxing vacation? Give us a call at 212-433-9692 or post here!

Comments [8]

Transportation Nation

Higher Gas Prices Won't Stop Estimated 2 Million Travelers in Florida for Memorial Day Holiday

Friday, May 27, 2011

(Orlando, Fla -Mark Simpson-WMFE)  High gas prices aren't expected to deter crowds from Central Florida this Memorial Day weekend.  Gas prices nationally are hovering around $3.84, about 7 cents higher than Florida's average.

Hotel bookings around Orlando are already higher than last year according to Visit Orlando spokesman Brian Martin, "  So far visitation demand for hotel rooms is up 9 percent."  Martin says he expects the hot summer months of June, July, and August to be strong as well.

2010 was a major slump for visitation, down by about 2 million visitors, but this year is off to much better so far but Martin says it's up in the first four months of 2011.

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Selected Shorts

Unexpected Developments

Sunday, August 08, 2010

A summer vacation, a romantic tryst, and a key business trip don’t turn out the way the characters in these two stories expected.