After you get vaccinated for COVID-19, are you planning to splurge on something like a trip or fancy dinner? If so, you’re not alone. According to a recent study from LendingTree, more than 80 percent of people surveyed expect to have some sort of celebratory splurge after getting vaccinated. In other words, once COVID-19 is better under control, you can expect a significant surge in travel.

Although this may be true, not everyone is on board with splurging this year. In fact 15 percent of those people say they will never feel financially secure again. That’s due to the uncertainty of the spread of coronavirus and whether life will ever return to normalcy. Read more at this new LendingTree survey.

Key Findings From LendingTree

82 percent of those planning to get the COVID-19 vaccine say they will splurge on something to celebrate. This may include a fancy dinner or a vacation. Additionally, 30 percent plan to splurge almost immediately after being vaccinated while 52 percent will wait awhile. Of all age groups surveyed, millennials are the most likely to go on a splurge.

15 percent of people surveyed say they will never feel financially secure, even with the promise of a vaccine bringing an end to the coronavirus pandemic. In the LendingTree survey, Women were nearly twice as likely as men to feel less financially secure in the poll (20 percent to 11 percent).

Even after being vaccinated, many Americans will continue to save as much as they can. 55 percent of Americans will keep saving as much as possible in case the pandemic returns. 37 percent will ease up on saving but still plan to save a little. 8 percent of those will stop saving after they get vaccinated.

72 percent of Americans have already splurged during the coronavirus pandemic to feel safer. The most common splurges were grocery deliveries (30 percent) and high-quality face masks (25 percent).

Most of those Americans who have already splurged to feel safe during the pandemic will continue spending extra on at least one thing after the pandemic. This includes grocery delivery and first-class travel. However, there are some things that consumers will not return to even after the pandemic is over. This includes dining out and going to the movies.

Of those surveyed, 23 percent do not plan on getting a COVID-19 vaccine.

While many Americans have thrived during the pandemic, millions more have suffered financially in the wake of the pandemic.

Recommendations From LendingTree

Because millions of Americans are still suffering from the coronavirus pandemic, LendingTree offered these recommendations.

Keep building an emergency fund. An emergency fund should be a top priority. Ideally, this fund should be worth three to six months of expenses. If you don’t have this, you need to start building on establishing this emergency fund.

Create a “splurge fund”. While this may not be applicable to all consumers, LendingTree recommends setting aside some funds to treat yourself to something like a vacation. You can also use these splurge funds to supplement your emergency fund.

Related: HealthCare Insider: Americans Ready To Travel

Revisit your budget. The beginning of the New Year is an excellent time to review your overall budget. Look where you can reduce expenses while increasing income.

Reduce your interest payments. If you’re dealing with high-interest debt payments, LendingTree suggests obtaining a 0 percent interest balance transfer credit card. However, prior to doing so, you must consider your credit score, the associated fees and how fast you can pay off the balance transfer card.

Be flexible while cutting yourself some slack. After having to deal with the worst year ever, it won’t be surprising to see many people wanting to splurge. But in doing so, some Americans will have to incur some debt in the process. But LendingTree says, that’s ok as everyone really deserves to splurge after the worst year ever.

How The Survey Was Conducted

LendingTree commissioned Qualtrics to conduct an online survey in December of 1,205 Americans. Using non-probability based sampling, the survey represented the overall American population. Generations were broken down into four categories:

Generation Z: Ages 18-23

Millennial: Ages 24-39

Generation X: Ages 40-54

Baby Boomers: Ages 55-74

The survey did include consumers from the Silent Generation, defined as 75 and older. However the sample size was too small to include in these findings.

Related: Coronavirus Information Guide

About The Author:

Randy Yagi is an award-winning freelance writer who served as the National Travel Writer for CBS Local from 2012-2019. More than 900 of his stories still appear in syndication across 23 CBS websites, including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and San Francisco. During his peak years with CBS, he reportedly had a digital audience reach of 489 million and more than 5.5 million monthly visitors. Additional stories have appeared in the Daily Meal, CBS Radio, Engadget and He is a Media Fellow of Stanford University, U.S. Army veteran and lifelong resident of Santa Cruz County, California.

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