The report also highlights the affordability of several European destinations this summer, as well as the best value U.S. destinations and tips for saving money on car rentals.

"Summer vacations have never been more affordable," said Tim MacDonald, general manager of "With year-over-year price reductions on flights, hotels and vacation packages in destinations worldwide, many Expedia(R) customers are taking advantage of these values by extending the length of their vacations."

Key highlights from this issue include:

1. Economic Climate Affects Customer Booking Patterns

- In order to stimulate demand, many hotels are offering complimentary nights and other promotions, and some consumers are leveraging this value to extend their vacations. Accordingto a survey of customers, 34 percent of summer vacations planned this year are four to six days in length, compared to 26 percent last year.

- booking data shows that the booking window is shrinking, and consumers are increasingly booking closer to their travel dates. In fact, has seen an increase in trip purchases in the seven- to 13-day out booking time frame.

- Travelers are also increasingly purchasing trip insurance to ensure flexibility in their travel plans; there was a 12 percent increase in trip insurance purchased with airfare on for summer travel this year.

2. Europe is Affordable Again

- Due to reductions in the cost of jet fuel and the strengthening of the U.S. dollar, the European vacation is again within reach for many travelers. Compared to last summer's prices, average airfares to major European destinations have dropped for summer 2009 travel: London declined 23 percent, Paris declined 27 percent and Rome declined 26 percent. Hotel prices this summer, compared to last summer, have also dropped across Europe: average daily rates (ADRs) in Barcelona are down 35 percent, ADRs in Rome are down 23 percent and ADRs in London are down 25 percent.

3. Tips: Saving on Car Rentals

- Book Together & Save: Adding a car rental to a vacation package (flight + hotel) could mean savings of up to 30 percent off retail rates.
- Book Early: Reserve a car early and check back often for lower prices - on Expedia, there are no change penalties.
- Search Thoroughly: Sometimes a larger car class can be less expensive in a certain location based on the company's inventory. Take the time to review multiple car types while you're searching - you might be pleasantly surprised with what you can fit into your budget.

The complete Expedia Travel Trendwatch can be found at