September 10, 2007
Outbound Travel From the U.S. to Asia Continues to Rise
A recent study by the Department of Commerce (DoC) strengthens what other organizations have been reporting: Asia continues to gain in popularity as a destination for American travelers.
In 2006, 63.7 million U.S. residents traveled abroad, a 5 percent increase over 2005. Of this figure, 30.1 million was overseas travel. Breaking down the 30.1 million figure even further, 21 percent traveled to Asia.
China and India showed the highest growth in U.S. outbound travel, with India surging 8 percent over 2005’s figures, and China increasing by 9.6 percent in 2006. In a bid to pump up its tourism arrivals even further, the Indian Tourism Office recently launched its "Incredible India” marketing campaign. Japan jumped 3 percent, while Thailand and Korea dipped 1 and 4 percent respectively, reflecting some of the perceived political uncertainty in the two countries.
The future is looking particularly bright in China. The U.S. and China recently signed a landmark aviation agreement to expand air services between the two countries, doubling the number of commercial passenger departures by 2012. The Department of Transportation is presently evaluating carrier applications for six flights to launch in the next two years: one in 2007, one in 2008 and four in 2009.
China reports that 58 percent of visitors stated leisure as the purpose of their trip. As the country counts down to prepare for hosting the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, leisure travel will certainly spike again.
The DoC survey backs up an earlier "Asia Travel Intentions 2007" survey conducted by Visa International Asia Pacific and the Pacific Asia Travel Association. The survey of 5,000 international travelers from 10 markets around the world found 52 percent considering Asia as their next travel destination, a 9 percent increase over last year’s survey. Thailand was rated the number-one destination, followed by Japan and China. —Mark Rogers
February 7, 2007
Industry's First Survey of 12-18 Year Old Group Travelers Reveals Them to Be a $10 Billion Market Segment
A majority of 12 to 18 year old travelers in the United States take at least one significant group trip each year without parents, spending almost $10 billion a year. The results are from a survey by the Student and Youth Travel Research Institute (SYTR-I) at Michigan State University, which conducts research on student and youth travel in North America. This vast market represents a significant niche within the overall U.S. travel industry, with an economic impact that is still largely unexplored and unappreciated, says the survey. The results were based on a preliminary survey of more than 300 U.S. households with children between the ages of 12 to 18 and cover the year 2005.
According to the survey, more than 60% of respondents indicated that the 12 to 18 year olds in their households had taken an overnight group trip in 2005, spending an average of $417. Those who purchased a tour package (44%) spent on average $495 ($427 on the package and $68 on incidentals); those who didn’t (56%) spent an average of $355. Extrapolated to the total population of 30 million 12 to 18 year olds, the results indicate that these school age travelers took approximately 25 million trips without their parents in 2005 and spent $9.8 billion.
Other results of the survey:
• More than half of the trips (52.1%) are school-related, involving education, organized sports, the arts, and spiritual/religious excursions
• Spring is the most popular season (43.7%) for trips, and June is the most popular month (18.2%)
• California is the most popular state destination for trips, capturing 8.4% of the total market and nearly $825 million in traveler spending, followed by Washington, D.C., and New York
• Washington, D.C., is the most popular city destination, capturing 7.8% of the total market and $764 million in traveler spending, followed by New York and Chicago
• Almost all states and 185 cities were reported as the primary destination for trips