Vacation from Debt Stress Is Needed

July 8, 2013 ( – Those suffering from debt stress are putting off the thing that may help them unwind—a vacation.

According to a recent survey from, 30% of Americans delayed a getaway in the past 12 months because of debt.

The survey focused on plans and purchases consumers delayed over the past year because of debt. Nearly one in four Americans (23%) said they delayed buying a car, while 18% delayed buying a home. When it comes to growing their families, however, Americans are less likely to wait. Only 7% of respondents delayed having kids because of debt, and just 5% postponed getting married.

“Debt often forces people to choose between what they want and what they can’t do without,” said editor at large Erica Sandberg. “When you’re worried about debt, adding to it by taking a vacation or upgrading to a new car can be hard to justify.”

The survey also found:

  • Mortgage debt was the most worrisome debt, with 19% of respondents saying it caused them the most stress in the past year. Student loan debt and credit card debt tied for second place at 14%.
  • Among those who said credit card debt was their biggest worry, 47% delayed a vacation, 28% delayed buying a new car, 17% delayed buying a home and 15% delayed retirement.
  • All age groups surveyed worried about some form of debt, but as people age, they replace old worries with new ones. For example, 31% of those ages 18 to 29 said they are most worried about student loan debt, and only 7% of them worry about mortgage debt the most. Those numbers flip-flop with those ages 50 to 64–8% are most worried about student debt, while 23% worry most about mortgage debt.

The survey was conducted for by Princeton Survey Research Associates International. It looked at a nationally representative sample of 1,004 American adults by telephone June 6 to 9, 2013.