A new survey reveals that 67 percent of Americans are concerned about becoming sick with cold or flu symptoms from others while traveling for the holidays. 

The survey commissioned by Mucinex, the number one doctor-recommended cold and flu brand in America, finds out that Thanksgiving dinner is the number one holiday activity that people would have sick-related FOMO (fear of missing out) about — a concern shared by 59 percent of Americans*. After all, roughly 189 million Americans2 (75 percent)* said they have seen passengers exhibiting cold or flu symptoms when traveling on public transportation in the past.

With overall holiday travel predicted to rise by nine percent this year, according to Airfarewatchdog, one of travelers' biggest concerns is arriving to their Thanksgiving destination without coming down with a cold or the flu.

Airfarewatchdog anticipates this year's travel season to be busy for travelers across the country.  According to its consumer polls, Wednesday, November 21 is slated to be the most popular travel day for fliers during Thanksgiving weekend, followed by Tuesday, November 20**. In addition, the outlet warns fliers to prepare for more people at airports as the percentage of people who said they always fly for the holidays has increased 12 percent since 2017**.

"Thanksgiving not only marks the beginning of the busy travel season, but also the first major peak in cough, cold and flu incidences. People's sick antennae are on high alert, and they don't want to worry about how other travelers may get them sick and put a damper on their holiday celebrations," said Brian Dolan, Equity Lead for Mucinex. "This holiday, we want to reduce the spread of symptoms and encourage people to #GiveThanksNotCoughs. If people do come down with a cough, they can look to Mucinex for relief and keep their symptoms under control."

However, travelers are not just sweeping their concerns about cold and flu symptoms under the rug. In fact, 186 million Americans3 (74 percent)* said they would not make physical contact with family or friends who have a cold or the flu, even on special occasions, and 80 percent of Americans said they would take extra precautions, like washing their hands more often, to avoid getting a cold or the flu during the holidays*.

Mucinex Thanksgiving Travel Outlook Health Infographic

"We are just entering the thick of the busy holiday travel season, and it's vital for travelers to ensure they are taking care of themselves," said Amanda Norcross, travel expert for Airfarewatchdog. "Travelers should get plenty of rest, drink plenty of water and not let the stress of packing and heading to the airport affect their well-being."

For Airfarewatchdog's Holiday Survival Guide 2018, please visit Airfarewatchdog.com. For more information on the entire Mucinex product portfolio, please visit Mucinex.com and join the Thanksgiving conversation by using #GiveThanksNotCoughs.

*Mucinex Survey Methodology
This survey was conducted online within the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of Mucinex from September 6-10, 2018 among 2,026 U.S. adults ages 18 and older. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.

1 Based on HCP ProVoice Survey (Cough & Cold symptoms) – Claim substantiation letter, Feb. 7, 2018
2 According to the US Census Bureau, there were an estimated 252,063,800 of Americans 18 and older (July, 2017).
252 x .75 = 189.04 = 189+ million Americans who would agree that they have noticed people being sick on public transportation (e.g., bus, plane, train)
3 252 x .74 = 186.48 = 186+ million Americans who would agree that they would not make physical contact (e.g., shake hands, kiss) with family/friends who are sick, even if it is a special occasion (e.g., holiday, birthday, wedding)