August 2 2010 by Chris McGinnis
While much of the media focus remains on frequent flyers, the fact of the matter is that there are a LOT more frequent drivers out there. This is especially true among Best Western's very best customers--members of a select group called the Diamond 100 (BWD100)--who have stayed at a Best Western at least 250 nights over the last five years.
In a recent survey regarding their driving habits, 76 percent report that nearly all their business trips are taken primarily by car or truck. About 40 percent log between 10,000 and 30,000 miles per year; another 40 percent log between 30,000 and 60,000 miles and a very frequent-driving 15 percent are on the road for a whopping 60,000 to 90,000 miles. Speaking for many, one BWD100 member said, "Air travel has turned very complex and we just don't care to deal with, so we drive a lot more."
What's interesting to me is that so many BWD100 members say they consider extended road trips a pleasure (47 percent) versus a pain (23 percent). "I enjoy what I do. I drive through the scenic inter-mountain West. I've got satellite radio. So I'm equipped to go," said one member. However, several members commented on the pros and cons of long trips, as one member wrote: "I do enjoy being in new places and exploring the old locations for new activities. However, I don't enjoy spending that much time away from my family."
Nearly 60 percent drive late-model vehicles (less than three years old) and prefer American brands by far (74 percent) over European or Asian brands. They most often drive trucks, sedans or SUVs. One member wrote, "Most non-American brand vehicles are too small and will not handle the weight of the tools and equipment I haul around."
Come back next week to find out how often BWD100 members run out of gas, when or if they speed, how often they get speeding tickets and more!