Planning to Travel This Holiday Season?

More Than Half of Americans Will Take to the Road, According to a Survey Conducted by Chrysler Group

- Forty-four percent of people surveyed say they are willing to drive up to 750 miles – Slightly more than one in four adults (27 percent) prefer flying over driving regardless of travel distance – Keep kids entertained and prevent motion sickness by using the backseat DVD player – Drivers can further enhance their fuel economy by following simple tips from Chrysler Group

AUBURN HILLS, Mich., Nov. 15 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Research released today found that more than half of Americans are planning to drive more than 100 miles this holiday season despite slightly higher gas prices, according to a national survey conducted by Goodmind, LLC on behalf of Chrysler Group. New vehicle safety standards, entertainment features and enhancements in comfort have revolutionized the family road trip experience of today and make longer road trips more desirable to the traveler.

Additional results of the survey of Americans’ travel experiences found that 55 percent of adults find road trips more enjoyable now than when they were kids and 60 percent wish their earlier vehicle had either a DVD system (35 percent) or navigation system (25 percent).

“Thanksgiving is one of the biggest travel weekends of the year,” said Jeff Bell, Vice President – Chrysler Marketing, Chrysler Group. “The Chrysler Pacifica offers flexibility and utility without sacrificing comfort or style. This modern vehicle gives drivers and passengers the opportunity to enjoy traveling together in the safety of their own vehicle.”

Chrysler Pacifica Road Trip Savvy Tips

With so many Americans taking to their vehicles this year, Chrysler partnered with family travel expert and editor of , Kyle McCarthy, to offer parents tips on how to survive the 2005 holiday travel season:

* Enlist kids to help with the packing and it won’t take so long. Give each child his own bag for essential toys, books and entertainment, and tuck it safely between the Chrysler Pacifica’s individual seats.

* If you pack the cargo hold the night before departure, stash a family overnight bag with toiletries and PJs on top, so you won’t have to spend time unloading en route.

* While inventions like side-curtain air bags and the Chrysler Pacifica’s 5-Star front- and side-impact safety ratings make the road trip a much safer experience, it’s the innovative backseat entertainment system that keeps kids happily strapped in – and that contributes to safety.

* Ceiling mounted DVD players are more than entertaining; they help prevent carsickness by keeping passengers oriented in the same direction as the vehicle. Chrysler Pacifica offers a rear DVD video and entertainment system, so parents and kids can choose their own form of entertainment.

* Eyes-straight-ahead games like “I Spy” and books-on-tape are better than reading for kids who are prone to motion sickness. Older kids have fun polishing their grades with Language CDs. Bring along a kitchen timer, and all ages can play “20 Questions” or “Geography.”

* Kids can be a great help with remembering items for a trip. Determining a road trip allowance for each child, then letting them know they’ll have to chip in to buy any forgotten essentials will ensure that everything makes it into the suitcase.

“Even with higher gas prices, families will be traveling this holiday season,” said Kyle McCarthy, editor – “An old fashioned road trip in today’s vehicles allows families to spend quality time together, surrounded by the latest features in safety, comfort and state-of- the-art technology as compared to when mom and dad were kids.”

Maximize Fuel Economy

While today’s vehicles are more fuel efficient compared to years ago, there are still additional measures people can take to further enhance their fuel economy. Following are a few ideas from Chrysler Group.

Modifying Driving Habits

* Reduce speeds – 65 mph is much better than 75, sometimes improving fuel economy by more than one mpg. Every 5 mpg over 65 mpg can decrease fuel economy by as much as 7 percent.

* Use modest acceleration when possible, minimizing “jack rabbit” starts.
* Use cruise control to help maintain a steady speed.

* Limit extended idles and warm up periods — don’t leave vehicles idle while running in for the cup of coffee in the morning.

* Plan your trip to avoid rush hour, if you can, to avoid idling in traffic.

Check Vehicle Condition
* Ensure proper vehicle maintenance.

* Replace dirty air filters — a clogged air filter can reduce fuel economy as much as 10 percent.

* Check tire pressures — tires under inflated by just 2 psi can reduce fuel economy as much as 1 percent.

* Remove extra weight from vehicles — an extra 100 pounds in the trunk or pick up box can lower fuel economy 1 to 2 percent.

* Reduce aerodynamic drag on vehicle by taking empty cargo carriers, bike racks, ski racks, etc off — at highway speed, 50 percent of the engine power is used to overcome aerodynamic drag.

* Keep vehicle engine tuned up as a noticeably out of tune engine can reduce fuel economy as much as 4 percent.

* If vehicle engine light is on, have the vehicle serviced — faulty components such as an oxygen sensor can reduce fuel economy as much as 40 percent.

Survey Says

Chrysler and Goodmind, LLC conducted a national survey to determine how men and women viewed family travel. According to those surveyed, the two biggest changes in the way we travel today are in safety (31 percent) and entertainment/DVD systems (31 percent). Additional survey results showed:

* Prep Time: Families spend an average of nine hours packing for road trips; parents spend 23 percent longer packing for a road trip than adults without children.

* On The Road Again: Eighty-three percent of the respondents take at least one road trip with their families every year, with nearly one in five (19 percent) taking four or more trips annually.

* On The Road with Children: Seventy percent of families with children go on two or more road trips each year, which means parents take an average of 39 percent more trips annually than adults without children.

* Trip Down Memory Lane: Fifty-five percent of those surveyed say that long road trips are more enjoyable now than when they were kids; the “License Plate Game” was identified by 32 percent of adults as their favorite travel game when they were young followed by reading (21 percent).

* Forget Me Not: The two most forgotten items when preparing for a road trip were cameras/video cameras (25 percent) and toothbrush/toiletries (22 percent).

* Keeping Busy: Twenty-eight percent of adults play games with their children to keep them entertained on road trips, while 26 percent of parents give their children snacks.

About the Chrysler Pacifica

With its segment-busting innovative flexibility, abundant safety features and elegant design, the 2006 Chrysler Pacifica offers the best features of a car, SUV and minivan all rolled into one. Features available on 2006 Chrysler Pacifica models include luxurious first- and second-row heated leather seating, rear DVD entertainment system, supplemental three-row side-curtain air bags, driver’s side inflatable knee blocker, power liftgate, power adjustable pedals, ParkSense(TM) rear back-up system, SIRIUS satellite radio and an in-dash navigation system.

The 2006 Chrysler Pacifica line-up features three models available in front- or all-wheel drive and five- or six-passenger seating configurations. The entry-level five-passenger Chrysler Pacifica, the nicely equipped six- passenger Chrysler Pacifica Touring model and the top-of-the-line Chrysler Pacifica Limited offer consumer’s clever utility and oceans of value.


Goodmind, LLC, a New York City-based research and consulting firm, fielded the 11 question survey on behalf of Chrysler Group. The study was conducted using online methodology to assess consumers’ traveling experiences, specifically family road trips. A total of 1,099 adult respondents 18 years of age or older participated in the survey.

The data were statistically tested against subgroups using t- and z- tests; with an overall confidence level of 90 percent.

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