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When Millennials Travel, Saving Gets Left Behind

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Millennials admit to splurging on life's luxuries from time to time.

For example, a study from Chase Card Services shows that millennials are willing to "upgrade" when it comes to travel. Thrift goes out of the window in favor of luxury amenities such as dry cleaning, massages and pet-friendly hotel services for almost half of millennials (48%), compared with the 72% of Americans ages 50 to 67 who say "staying within a budget" is the biggest priority when traveling.

"Millennials are a tech-savvy generation that values social connections, convenience and opportunities to indulge in luxuries," says Sisy Vicente, general manager at Chase Card Services. "This is a generation of travelers that clearly sees the benefit of travel rewards."

But get a 35-year-old away from a luxury hotel and his or her financial mindset changes significantly.

A separate survey released by Wells Fargo this week shows 80% of millennials saying the Great Recession taught them the importance of saving for potential money needs. Millennial men are in a better position when it comes to retirement savings, with 58% of men saying they are on track for retirement compared with 41% of women. (Yet only 16% of millennials say "start saving for retirement" is a big priority, compared with 43% of their baby boomer elders.)

"The silver lining of the recession that started over five years ago is that a majority of millennials get that saving is a necessity and even equate it with 'surviving' tough times," said Karen Wimbish, director of retail retirement at Wells Fargo. "But millennial women are starting out their working lives making far less than men and, as a consequence, are saving less and feeling less contentment at the start of their working lives." 

Spending can be a problem, though. The Wells Fargo survey says 42% of the demographic call debt their "top financial concern." Could the debt come from luxury travel?

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