Current Event – Wealthy Americans Should Take Vacations
I just read an article today about the decline in the travel industry. The downturn is not surprising in this economic climate, but what is a little surprising is that the wealthy are cutting back on their vacations too.
In a recent survey of travelers’ intentions, Forrester Research found the solidly middle class intended to cut back on travel, but so did 28% of those with household incomes of $100,000 and above. “It shows that the well-to-do are not being spared by this recession,” says travel industry analyst Henry Harteveldt.
“Luxury shame is very real,” says Harteveldt of Forrester Research. “When your neighbors are losing their jobs and you’re doing well, you don’t flaunt your success.”
What this means is that guilt is causing the rich to down-size their vacations or to cancel them outright. Now on the surface, this makes sense. Everyone is tightening their belts.
However, my concern stems from the fact that we need the wealthy to stimulate the economy in these harsh times. Middle Americans are losing jobs and homes while the wealthy seem to be hoarding money for a rainy day.
To all the rich Americans out there, in case you didn’t notice, it’s pouring outside. Yes, some of us may be jealous of your cash flow and your ability to go out to fancy restaurants and take expensive cruises, but we also need you to keep spending your money.
Feel free to cut back on mink coats, as long as you are taking that money and spending it elsewhere. If luxury cruises make you feel guilty, then take your money and donate it to the local foodbank so they can restock the shelves for those who need it. If you don’t feel comfortable investing in the volatile stock markets, take your money and invest it in our children. Give schools money for new books and playground equipment.
Just whatever you do, don’t keep your money in your pockets, the rest of the country is counting on you to spend your money and help dig us out of this economic vortex.