Yeah, staycations had a moment. And that moment seems to be over now, as the cost-conscious travel behaviors that emerged during the big financial crisis have waned, and the new findings from MMGY Global/Harrison Group 2012 Portrait of American Travelers show renewed interest in pricier/quality experiences that Americans deem “worth it.” The survey results are also borne out by the how the hotel industry, especially the upscale/luxury part of it, has been booming over 2012 and forecasted to continue over the next year as well.

According to the survey, more U.S. travelers prefer upscale hotels and resorts this year than last, with 26 percent of vacationers preferring luxury lodging versus just 15 percent in 2011. Travelers are more willing to pay full price “as long as I am guaranteed the quality and service I deserve.”

In a surprising departure from the travel planning scenarios that prevailed during the recent recession, today’s travelers choose the destination (34 percent) and type of trip (33 percent) first, before setting a budget (18 percent) and searching for deals (eight percent).

On disappointing part of the survey: fewer U.S. travelers are interested in international trips overall, dropping to nine percent of all leisure travelers today (versus 11 percent last year).

Lots more info here.