International Visitation to U.S Increases Through August

The United States experienced a 9 percent increase in international visitors during the first eight months of the year when compared to the same period in 2007. The U.S. Department of Commerce announced that 34.9 million international visitors traveled to the country from January to August, and spent $96.3 billion during the period. The 5.6 million visitors in August alone was an increase of 6 percent when compared to August of 2007, and they spent a record $12.7 billion— an increase of 20 percent.

The greatest increase in international travelers came from Russia, with the number increasing by 28 percent over the first eight months of 2008. Western Europe followed with an 18 percent increase, Africa with a 17 percent increase, Eastern Europe with an increase in 15 percent, and both South America and Canada with an increase of 14 percent. Arrivals from the Middle East increased by 9 percent while visitors from Australia increased by 6 percent, Central American travelers increased by 2 percent and travelers from Asia increased by 1 percent.

Visitation from the Caribbean decreased 8 percent during the 8 month period while the number of travelers from Mexico decreased 7 percent.

The monthly Summary of International Travel to the U.S. report has approximately 30 tables that provide data on monthly and year-to-date arrivals to the country. The report provides data on approximately 90 countries each month and more than 40 ports of entry. Numerous breakouts are provided by world region and country for the port tables as well.

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