A recent poll revealed that American shoppers aren’t necessarily searching for a gift this year but a new experience as more people are prioritizing travel this year for Black Friday.

Skyscanner polled over 1,000 Americans, and almost a third of people surveyed say would like to receive an experience such as travel over material goods as a gift this year. That number increases to almost 40 percent for the 18-to-24 age group.

A majority of respondents would like to try something new this year or go on an adventure such as hiking, taking part in a water sport, or learning a new culture.

“Travel domestically and internationally is the most open it has been since March 2020, with more straightforward rules for leaving the US and entering the top international destinations,” says Mark Crossey, US Traveler Expert at Skyscanner.  “It makes sense that we will see many Americans choosing to give the gift of time well spent this festive season and take to the skies as a treat to themselves or loved ones.”

Crossey adds, “The world is opening up to Americans after months of travel restrictions, and many are keen to take advantage of this. The last eighteen months has taught us the value of time spent making memories, and the value of experiences such as travel over things we might have thought important pre-pandemic.”

When it comes to scoring good deals this Black Friday, Crossey has some tips:

1. Be flexible with dates

Photo by Eric Rothermel

When searching, use multiple dates and airports to increase your chances of getting a good deal.

According to Crossey, he says setting up price alerts will ensure you’re the first to know as prices drop with any additional discounts or added supply.


2. Consider a new destination

Photo by Kyle Glenn

“2020 saw new destinations rise in popularity as corridors shone a light on some surprising gems,” says Crossey. “Swapping your usual break for somewhere on a travel corridor could be an unexpected delight.”

3. Mix and match airlines

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Mixing and matching airlines can dramatically cut costs as fares don’t have to be booked as returns.

4. Know your rights

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“In the past, being flexible with travel might have meant flying at anti-social times to get a good price,” says Crossey. “But now with a constantly changing travel landscape, it’s important to know what the change policies are on flight tickets and accommodation.”