The Commerce Department's Bureau of Economic Analysis reports that spending on tourism and travel dropped at an annual rate of 8.1 percent in the third quarter, the largest decrease since 2001. In the meantime, travel and tourism prices rose overall in the quarter.
Passenger air transportation was at the forefront of the decline, falling 20.4 percent in the third quarter after falling 18.7 percent in the second quarter. Spending on international flights fell sharply after two quarters of strong demand and spending on domestic flights declined for the fourth consecutive quarter.
Spending on accommodations sank as well, decreasing 3 percent in the third quarter. According to the report, room occupancy fell and while rates rose as hotels eliminated discounts intended to boost demand.