comscore Few U.S. fliers will pay for extras | Honolulu Star-Advertiser

Few U.S. fliers will pay for extras

Americans are ready to tough it out on a cramped flight without food or drinks.

But if the flight stretches to seven to 12 hours, Americans start to crack open their wallets for food, extra legroom and booze, according to a new survey that looked at the spending habits of travelers across the globe.

The survey by travel giant Expedia questioned more than 11,000 travelers from 22 countries.

Overall, the study found, Canadian travelers are among the least willing to part with their dollars while on a plane. American travelers are almost as tight-fisted as the Canadians, but Mexican travelers are much freer with their pesos, the survey found.

On a short-haul flight, 15 percent of Americans are willing to pay for a full meal, compared with 26 percent of travelers worldwide, according to the survey. On a short-haul flight, 45 percent of Chinese travelers are happy to pay for a full meal.

But once the flights reach seven to 12 hours, Americans start to spend, with 49 percent of U.S. travelers saying they would pay for a full meal, 41 percent saying they would pay for extra legroom and 20 percent willing to buy an alcoholic drink.

Travel site arranges hotel room-sharing

Short-term rental sites such as Airbnb can save you a few bucks on your lodging costs, but now a Seattle marketing producer has created an online company that could cut your hotel bills in half.

The catch? You have to share your hotel room with a stranger.

Bryon Shannon, who founded the Winston Club in November, said he created the website so that travelers who are visiting the same town can split the cost of a hotel room. Joining the club is free, and you get to accept or reject the roommate whom the club chooses for you, based on biographical information provided by club members.

Winston Club makes its money by collecting a share of the room charge, just as other hotel booking sites do. So far, the club has agreements to operate in hotels in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Seattle and Portland, Ore. Shannon declined to say how many travelers have used the Winston Club so far.

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