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Americans Confess To Pre-Meditated Shopping While On Vacation

Orbitz Survey Reveals 51% of Vacationers Have Done Their Holiday Shopping While Traveling

Chicago, October 25, 2004 - From the designer jacket in New York, to the hand-blown wine glasses in Napa, to the scandalous bathing suit in Miami, we treasure the items we give for what they are as much as where they come from... whether they're presents for ourselves or others. A recent survey of travelers by Orbitz, the site with more low fares, more hotels and more cars, reveals that 51% have done their holiday shopping while vacationing, ringing up an average of $2,000 on their most extravagant out-of-town shopping sprees.

Just how important is shopping to travelers? For almost three-quarters of leisure travelers (73%), shopping is as important, or more important, than nightlife when planning a vacation. In fact, 49% of survey respondents admitted to purposefully leaving room in their suitcase to bring back purchases made while traveling. Some take it even further, buying an extra suitcase (17%) or even throwing things away to make room for their new loot (4%).

"People are passionate about travel, and they're passionate about shopping," says John Samuel, Orbitz executive vice president for Consumer Travel. "At Orbitz, we make it our business to take the guesswork out of finding a great deal on travel for consumers who are traveling to shop or just happen to shop while they travel."

While on vacation, serious shoppers are willing to sacrifice comfort to come home with more items. To save more money for shopping, 21% of respondents have booked a cheaper hotel, 19% have skipped a meal or eaten a less expensive meal, and 16% have walked or taken public transportation instead of taking a cab.

According to the survey, 51% of vacationers have considered sales, outlet shopping and local retail hot spots when planning a trip. As far as which is the best city in the United States for shopping, respondents reported:

  • New York (41%)
  • Las Vegas (15%)
  • San Francisco (14%)
  • Los Angeles (13%)
  • Chicago (13%)

People aren't just shopping in their travel destinations; they're also shopping en-route. Sixty-three percent of respondents have purchased gifts in airport gift shops. Reasons include having time to waste in the airport (39%), forgetting to purchase the gift while on the trip (23%), taking advantage of duty-free items (21%), wanting to indulge themselves (15%), wanting to buy something to entertain the kids (11%), needing to spend extra currency (9%) and other (9%).

And just who is at the receiving end of all this gift buying? It's not only friends and loved-ones. Fifty-four percent of vacationers admitted to splurging on gifts for themselves that they wouldn't buy at home.

From now until December 18, Orbitz is partnering with the award-winning shopping magazine Lucky to make planning a shopping excursion easier than ever. The editors at Lucky have scoured eight destinations -- Boston, Chicago, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, San Francisco and Seattle -- for their favorite finds in fashion, beauty, lifestyle, gifts and specialty items, as well as great restaurants. Travelers can get all the information they need to plan their shopping adventure while finding great deals on air and conveniently located hotels when they log on to


Harris Interactive®, via its QuickQuerySM online omnibus, fielded the nine question survey on behalf of Orbitz. This report presents the uncoded findings of this online study conducted among a nationwide sample of 2,696 U.S. adults comprising 1,282 men and 1,414 women 18 years of age or older. The data were weighted to be representative of the total U.S. adult population on the basis of region, age within gender, education, household income, race/ethnicity and propensity to be online. Interviewing for this omnibus survey was completed during the period August 25 through August 30, 2004. The margin of error for the total sample is plus or minus 2 percentage points.

About Orbitz

Orbitz is a leading online travel company that enables travelers to search for and purchase a broad array of travel products, including airline tickets, lodging, rental cars, cruises and vacation packages. Since launching its website to the general public in June 2001, Orbitz has become the third largest online travel site based on gross travel bookings. On, consumers can search more than 455 airlines, as well as rates at tens of thousands of lodging properties worldwide and at 22 car rental companies. For more information on the company, visit

Statements in this press release regarding Orbitz that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements and are subject to risks, assumptions and uncertainties that could cause such statements to differ materially from actual future events or results. Any such forward-looking statements are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The following factors, among others, could cause Orbitz' actual results to differ materially from those described in a forward-looking statement: Orbitz' ability to retain and attract customers on a cost-effective basis; increasing competition from existing or new competitors; relationships with Orbitz' controlling stockholders and with other travel suppliers; limitations that could affect the expansion of our Supplier Link business; risks relating to our ability to expand our business generally; specific risks that could affect our ability to achieve growth plans for portions of our business, such as hotels; rapid technological change affecting our industry; technical and operational issues, such as journey control restrictions, that result from changes in travel suppliers' distribution methodologies that could affect our results; risks associated with litigation or government regulation; declines, disruptions or events affecting the travel industry; potential fluctuations in our quarterly and annual results. This list is intended to identify only certain of the principal factors that could cause actual results to differ. Readers are referred to the reports and documents filed from time to time by Orbitz with the Securities and Exchange Commission for a discussion of these and other important risk factors. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements, which are made as of the date of this press release. Orbitz undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or any other reason.

About Harris Interactive

Harris Interactive (a href=> is a worldwide market research and consulting firm best known for The Harris Poll®, and for pioneering the Internet method to conduct scientifically accurate market research. Headquartered in Rochester, New York, Harris Interactive combines proprietary methodologies and technology with expertise in predictive, custom and strategic research. The Company conducts international research from its U.S. offices and through wholly owned subsidiaries--London-based HI Europe (, Paris-based Novatris and Tokyo-based Harris Interactive Japan--as well as through the Harris Interactive Global Network of independent market- and opinion-research firms.

"Safe Harbor" Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Statements in this press release regarding Orbitz Worldwide Inc.'s business which are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties. For a discussion of such risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report or Form 10-K for the most recently ended fiscal year.