SALT LAKE CITY — Anyone got a spare phone charger?
In a new report about forgotten road trip items Wednesday, AAA says half of Utahns they surveyed admitted they have forgotten cellphone chargers while traveling. But that's not exactly out of ordinary in terms of other residents in the West.
With a rebound in traveling underway this summer, the agency studied what items Western residents were most likely to forget while packing. Cellphone chargers placed second behind only a toothbrush or toothpaste, which led the way. Hair-related items, such as brushes, razors and hair products, placed third; underwear/socks and other items of clothing rounded out the top five.
AAA officials said the results were from a survey of over 2,200 travelers from Utah, Alaska, Arizona, California, Montana, Nevada and Wyoming who either had a road trip in the past two years or planned to take one within the next year. More than half admitted to forgetting items.
More than one-third of those surveyed also admitted they've left a cellphone charger at their travel destination, which topped items most likely to be left behind on a trip back.
In addition to items lost, the report found a generational divide among Utahns and travel forgetfulness. For instance, they found Utah baby boomers are likely to forget one or two items when traveling, while millennials and Gen Zers are more likely to forget three or more items.
Meanwhile, Alaskans, at 58%, said they feel the most irritated when they forget something important, which was the highest among the seven states in that category. In all, 45% of all respondents said they feel the most irritated when they forget something important.
Californians, at 35%, were the most stressed about forgetting an important item for themselves or their children among the seven states studied, while Arizonans, at 14%, were most stressed if their spouse or partner forgot something important.
To avoid forgetting an important item, AAA Utah officials say travelers should make a list, pack in advance of the trip instead of the night before or the day of, lay out everything before packing and double-check all bags before leaving for a trip.
Their advice comes as travel numbers in the U.S. are slowly returning to levels before COVID-19. For instance, the U.S. Travel Association reported on July 1 that Independence Day travel volumes were anticipated to be the second-highest on record.
The report found U.S. travel spending in May remained 21% below 2019 levels but it was a significant boost from May 2020, when travel spending had fallen to 72% below the May 2019 marker.