Younger Consumers Drive Surge in Live Event Travel

About three in five Gen Z and Millennials plan to travel for events in the next 12 months.

April 19, 2024

Millennials and Gen Z are showing what matters to them—and how they will spend their money. In a press release, AAA announced that a new survey from AAA and Bread Financial found younger generations are driving a surge in live event travel.

Approximately three in five Gen Z (65%) and Millennial (58%) respondents confirmed they have traveled in the past 12 months and/or plan to travel in the next 12 months for in-person events like concerts, sporting events, comedy shows, and book readings that are more than 50 miles from home. This compares to 43% of Gen X and just 27% of Baby Boomers.

More than half (53%) of Gen Z travelers have or plan to head to live events by plane, the most of any generation. For Gen Z travelers, 18% say they have or would be willing to go more than 1,500 miles—the distance of half of the continental United States—compared to only 9% of Baby Boomer travelers.

“Younger generations are leading the charge when it comes to a shift in consumer spending habits surrounding live event travel,” said Paula Twidale, senior vice president of AAA Travel. “Gen Z and Millennial travelers are taking their trips to the next level by going farther and spending more than other generations for live events. They don’t want to miss out and will do what it takes to see their favorite artist, sports team, or other live event in person.”

The study results also showed that the youngest generation is pushing concert travel with more than half (52%) of Gen Z travelers planning to attend a music event in the next 12 months. Artists themselves can influence Gen Z’s travel habits, as one in five travelers (20%) have traveled or plan to travel to a Taylor Swift concert.

More than three in four (79%) travelers are eager to head to their dream event location, with New York, Florida, and California being the most popular states and Las Vegas and Chicago coming out as the top cities.

Dive into the April issue of NACS Magazine for advice on catering to road trippers, including the article “Road Trip Revelations.”