By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published Nov 08, 2017 at 5:59 PM

Travel app TripIt from Concur wanted to know which travelers are the happiest and so it does inquiring minds do: it conducted a study.

After digging into ratings of more than a half-million flights from 2016 and ‘17, TripIt discovered that travel happiness derives from three things: how old you are, where you live and which airports you’re flying from and into.

When it comes to hometown, here’s the top 10 for happy travelers. You’ll want to pay special attention to No. 6:

  1. Honolulu, Hawaii
  2. Phoenix, Arizona
  3. Nashville, Tennessee
  4. St. Louis, Missouri
  5. Tampa, Florida
  6. Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  7. Kansas City, Missouri
  8. Baltimore, Maryland
  9. Orlando, Florida
  10. Albuquerque, New Mexico

Interestingly, Milwaukee landed in the heart of a list that mostly includes travelers from places with much more temperate (or hotter) climates. I know why we might be happy to be getting out of dodge in, say, February, but why are the Honoluluans so cheery to be away from a city most everyone else wants to visit?

As for the happiest flyers by age, I’ve got bad news for my generation. We’re miserable on the road (surely they don’t mean me, because there’s almost nothing I’d prefer to do than travel).

Millennials (born 1983-99) were found to be the happiest, followed by Baby Boomers (1946-64) and so-called "Xennials," a "microgeneration" born between 1977 and 1982. Gen X’ers (1965-76) were dead last.

Interestingly, the most popular airports to fly out of into tended to be alternate airports – the "second" airport in a region. Here are the winners in the airport category:


  1. MDW – Chicago
  2. DAL – Dallas
  3. BUR – Burbank
  4. HOU – Houston
  5. OAK – Oakland
  6. SAT – San Antonio
  7. SNA – Santa Ana
  8. STL – St. Louis
  9. BNA – Nashville
  10. SJC – San Jose


  1. DAL – Dallas
  2. MDW – Chicago
  3. HOU – Houston
  4. BUR – Burbank
  5. OAK – Oakland
  6. BWI – Baltimore
  7. BNA – Nashville
  8. MCI – Kansas City
  9. ONT – Ontario
  10. SNA – Santa Ana

Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.

He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.

With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.

He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.

In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.

He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.