Presidential vacations are typically a working retreat and often draw a lot of attention from the press. The location, length and cost of traveling American presidents commonly garner even more headlines during an election year. This week, President Barack Obama spent the afternoon with his family on the beach in Hawaii released green sea turtles into the ocean with Sea Life Park staffers, according to ABC News. Before returning to Washington next week the president is expected to request Congress to increase the debt ceiling by $16 trillion, according to ABC News.
President Obama opted not to stay at his Winter White House in Hawaii during this visit. He and his family are renting a beachfront home on Kailua. President Obama's staff and the White House Press Corps are staying nearby at the Westin Moana Surfrider hotel, according to the Huffington Post. The president's vacation cost the taxpayers $4 million, approximately $2.5 million more than the first family's trip to Hawaii last year, according to the Huffington Post.
Prior to the Christmas trip to Hawaii, President Obama had spent 61 days during his first 31 months in office. The cost of the president's 11-day vacation to Martha's Vineyard required rental homes for secret service agents, armored SUVs were flown to the area to transport the Obama's, a motorcade of approximately 20 cars and security coverage by the U.S. Coast Guard, according to CBS News.
George W. Bush
President Bush spent 180 days on his Crawford Ranch and at Camp David during his first 31 months in office, according to CBS News. The cost of flying Air Force One to the Texas ranch cost approximately $56,800 per trip, according to Media Matters. President Bush spent each Christmas at the White House so his staff and secret service could spend the holiday with their family, according to Conservative Byte.
President Clinton spent 28 days on vacation during his first 31 months in office according to CBS News. Clinton typically vacationed at Martha's Vineyard and the Hamptons, but also took two summer trips to Jackson Hole, Wyo., according to History News Network. President Clinton spent 233 abroad during 55 trips, according to Truth Quake. A Clinton excursion in 2000 is pegged as the most expense presidential trip ever, with a price tag of $50 million, according to the Free Republic.
President Reagan spent 112 days on vacation during his first 31 months in office according to CBS News. He spent most of his vacation time on his California ranch near Santa Barbara, according to NBC Bay Area News. The White House communications team and national security staff accompanied President Reagan during trips home to his ranch. President Reagan issued the order to fire striking air force controllers during a vacation at his ranch in 1981, according to NBC Bay Area News. Taxpayers covered the cost of approximately $8 million for presidential travel during the Reagan's first 6 years in office, according to the LA Times.