Young woman traveling by car with her dog.

As Americans increasingly prioritize the care and company, it’s only logical that they prefer to include their animal companions in their travel plans. Leaving a pet behind when you go on vacation is stressful and worrisome for both pet and “pet parent”; and making arrangements for pet care while you’re away can be challenging and, most of all, expensive. It seems that more and more people are opting, instead, to make more practical vacation plans that allow them to bring their pets along.

In a recently released report—based on Google Consumer online survey conducted May 22-25, 2019 among 2,000 U.S. adults—it was revealed that 77 percent of vacationers are planning to take their pets on a road trip this summer and visiting dog parks (20 percent) and taking selfies at tourist attractions (21 percent) are at the top of their to-do list while on the road.

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The majority of pet owners expressed a desire to travel cross-country by car with their four-legged friends (33 percent) and are willing to go the extra mile to please their pets, spending up to an extra $500 extra on food, pet-friendly lodging and shared activities (40 percent). Online travel-fare aggregator Orbitz also reports that hotel searches using its pet-friendly filter have increased 40 percent year-over-year, from the first quarter of 2018 to first quarter 2019.

Dan Schachner, Animal Planet host, announcer and annual “rufferee” of the Puppy Bowl, weighed in on the subject with Orbitz, which has created a new, interactive road-trip map based on the Google survey, detailing the seven most pet-friendly trips to plan this summer, with key points of interest marked every 100 miles or less along the way.

Schachner’s advice for pet owners included: “Taking a pet with you on a road trip is a great way to bond and establish a deeper connection, but it’s important to consider your dog’s age, breed and personality. Know what your pup can handle and plan accordingly.”

“There’s a road trip for every kind of dog and dog owner,” Schachner continued. “Routes with off-leash parks, hiking trails and open play areas are great for active dogs. More passive dogs might enjoy an urban adventure with dog-friendly hotels and minimal walking.”

The seven pet-friendly routes featured on Orbitz have been ranked based on photo-worthy road trip attractions, outdoor activities, accommodations, and bars and restaurants across geographically diverse regions of the U.S. Step-by-step driving directions for these routes are also available for download from Google Maps.