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AARP's New Travel Site Unveils Exclusive Tools And Features To Help Pack More Into Every Trip

Users can seamlessly dream, plan, book and share trips with tailored content and interactive tools

WASHINGTON, March 17, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- AARP Travel (travel.aarp.org/welcome), a new travel website launching today, offers a one-stop online experience that helps users take their travel ideas from dream to destination.

To view the multimedia content associated with this release, please click: http://www.multivu.com/players/English/66070-aarp-new-travel-website/

AARP national logo

With personalized trip planning tools like Trip Finder and Map Explorer, website visitors can put together the type of trips they want, get travel tips from noted travel expert and AARP Travel Ambassador Samantha Brown and read hundreds of articles and information on enticing destinations near and far. AARP's free site is designed to help consumers get the most out of every trip.

"I travel for a living, and on any given trip, most of the fellow travelers I meet are older," said Brown. "People tell me how much they love the travel effect on their lives, health, and relationships, but they're not in love with the sometimes confusing do-it-yourself research and planning process. With AARP Travel, they'll have an easy-to-use resource to seize the trip and have fun in the process."

AARP Travel's range of travel tools and features include:

  • Trip Finder — a fun, smart and visual series of questions to deliver ideas and recommendations for destinations — including some unexpected ones;
  • Map Explorer — a detailed street-level interactive map that includes attractions, restaurants, hotels, local color and reviews;
  • My Trips — a personal page where users can save and organize trip ideas, itineraries and related articles in one place and add to or edit them over multiple visits;
  • Articles and Destinations — travel tips from AARP Travel Ambassador Samantha Brown, articles specifically geared toward the 50+ traveler and information about hundreds of domestic and international locations; and
  • Book Trips booking tools provided through AARP's relationships with Expedia and Liberty Travel that give you access to member discounts.

"The features we've launched today, along with new content and tools we'll add to AARP Travel as the service grows, reflect the simplicity, ease of use and convenience people want all under one roof," said Sami Hassanyeh, Chief Digital Officer for AARP.  "Whether it's a weekend family trip or the vacation of a lifetime, we want to enable people to travel intelligently, enjoyably and economically, anywhere and anytime."

Research shows that travel ranks as the top aspiration for people 50+, and according to analysis of U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data, personal travel spend for the 50+ traveler tops $120 billion per year and will grow as boomers have more time to travel.  AARP Travel helps members and others go from dream to destination through a suite of personalized features that let users explore, plan and book trips at their own pace, offering suggestions on where and when to go, what to do, how to prepare for trips and how to save money.

AARP Travel answers the need for a simple and comprehensive way to manage the scattered process of travel planning.  And through new research conducted on the travel habits of people 50+, AARP found that:

  • Trips Per Year — Americans in the 50+ age demographic take about six overnight trips unrelated to business of at least 50 miles from home per year;
  • Website Planning — Eight out of 10 Americans 50+ use websites to plan as well as book their personal travel;
  • Time Spent Planning — Travelers 50+ spend about 30–36 hours per year planning personal trips online but would prefer to spend about half as much time per year (12–18 hours) planning; and
  • Time Spent Booking — The 50+ traveler spends about 18 hours per year online booking personal travel but would prefer to spend about 12 hours per year (at least an hour less per trip) booking.

"Through our new online travel study and conversations with our members, we understand what the 50+ traveler is looking for — and looking to avoid," said Stephanie Miles, Vice President, Member Value for AARP. "The 50+ are looking to enjoy all aspects of travel.  Currently, the market is fragmented and people have to open multiple sites at once just to plan a trip. We built AARP Travel to make travel fun and easy with the tools, information and offerings needed. We want the 50+ make the most of every moment and every dollar."

For more information about AARP's research on online travel planning and what people 50+ are doing online, please click here or follow the link (www.aarp.org/research/surveys/online-travel-study-aarp.html).

As part of today's announcement, AARP will host a Google Hangout featuring AARP Travel Ambassador Samantha Brown on Tuesday, March 18 at 1 p.m. Eastern.  During this Hangout, Samantha will discuss highlights of AARP Travel and talk about how this new experience will help travelers make the most out of every trip and every dollar. To participate in this live discussion, please visit http://bit.ly/aarpontravel.

AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, with a membership of nearly 38 million, that helps people turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities and fights for the issues that matter most to families such as healthcare, employment and income security, retirement planning, affordable utilities and protection from financial abuse. We advocate for individuals in the marketplace by selecting products and services of high quality and value to carry the AARP name as well as help our members obtain discounts on a wide range of products, travel, and services.  A trusted source for lifestyle tips, news and educational information, AARP produces AARP The Magazine, the world's largest circulation magazine; AARP Bulletin; www.aarp.org; AARP TV & Radio; AARP Books; and AARP en Espanol, a Spanish-language website addressing the interests and needs of Hispanics. AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to political campaigns or candidates.  The AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity that provides security, protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors, and sponsors. AARP has staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Learn more at www.aarp.org.

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SOURCE AARP

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