The US Travel Association predicts a drop in vacation travel because of the recession, which could make some vacation spots much cheaper than usual. Terri Dowd does not plan to take a trip to Hawaii or Seattle this year to see her family. “I expect the economy to get worse before it gets better,” she said. The US Travel Association and AAA predict the recession is going to keep a lot people just like Dowd closer to home. In fact, the USTA expects a 1.3 percent drop in vacation travel. “If you're fired up to travel you should go for it,” said travel agent Liz Coughlin. Liz said now is the perfect time to start planning a vacation. She said many travel destinations like hotel getaways, cruises, and amusement parks, are offering deep discounts. Recently, she booked a 7-day Disney World trip for $2800. A year ago, she estimates the trip would have cost $3300. Liz added, “Be prepared to purchase. Don't wait.” That is exactly what Angie Barr did. Coughlin booked Angie an April trip to Disney World. “You know, when the economy is bad, you put off lots of different things so you have to pick what that is. For us this year, after waiting three or four years, this is not the year to put it off,” Barr said. Despite the financial crisis, Demetria Clark's family still plans to take its cruise. ”As a family, we are. We're taking the route of the more people that go within the trip packages, the cheaper it is,” she said. Dowd said her family will take a road trip to New York this year, but it won't be extravagant, at least not until the economy gets better. “You have to cut back in one area, in order to travel in another. I think people are doing good now if they can just keep their heads above water,” she said. AAA expects high-end vacation spots to places like Asia, Europe, and Egypt won't change much. They expect people will make shorter trips this year. They expect drive-to destinations like Wilmington to do fine, as well.
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