More travelers to use credit card rewards this summer, survey says
News from Los Angeles Times:

More Americans plan to use credit card rewards to help pay for travel this summer. (Paul Sakuma / Associated Press / June 3, 2012)

During this summer travel season, more Americans are expected to use credit card rewards to cover some of their costs, according to a new survey.

The survey by the credit card company Capital One found that 52% of those who plan to travel this summer said they will use credit card reward points to pay for some costs. Last year, 42% of those who took the survey said they planned to use credit card rewards.

As for what they will use those reward points on, 58% of those who were surveyed said they planned to use them on airfare, 42% on hotel costs and 18% on gasoline.

“In today’s tough economic times, more consumers are using rewards to make the most of their summer vacation time and limiting the…………… continues on Los Angeles Times

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Hotel rates for business travelers near pre-recession levels
News from Los Angeles Times:

The cost of air travel has rebounded to pre-recession levels, and now it looks like the prices of hotel rooms for business travelers are on their way to those heights.

Hotel rates for business travelers in North America surged 9.3% in April, coming within 3 percentage points of the peak pre-recession rates in fall 2008, according to Pegasus Solutions, a technology company for the hotel industry.

“Rates in many markets are either continuing to grow at near-record paces or setting new year-over-year growth records,” the Dallas company’s report said. “Steady demand is the great enabler of this remarkable rate growth.”

For leisure travelers, rates increased 7.3% in April but remained below pre-recession peaks by double-digit percentage points, the company said.

STR Global, which tracks supply and demand in the hotel industry, reported that the overall average hotel rate in the U.S. at the end of April was $ 105.71 — a 5% increase compared with the same period in 2011.

By comparison, the average U.S. hotel rate was $ 107.01 in August 2008, just before rates dropped for 18 straight months because of slumping demand and the faltering economy.

The Pegasus report predicts that rate increases will continue in the months ahead.

More travelers to use credit card rewards this summer, survey says continues on Los Angeles Times

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