International Travel to, From U.S. Recovering: WTTC

New data released by the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) and its partner ForwardKeys on international flight booking trends revealed that the long-awaited recovery of international traveler spending in the U.S. is finally underway.

According to the research, inbound travelers are returning in droves after the U.S. government dropped the requirement to COVID test before entry. But while ForwardKeys’ data shows bookings increased by 93 percent during the past six weeks compared to the same period last year, international spending in the U.S. is still lagging other destinations and is not expected to reach pre-pandemic levels until 2025. In addition, WTTC‘s latest annual Economic Impact Report (EIR) showed 2021 international visitor spending grew only 1.4 percent, reaching $40.3 billion, but falling far short of 2019’s total of $190.9 billion.

Iconic U.S. Cities Remain Popular

According to latest flight booking data, iconic American cities remain popular destinations for visitors to the U.S., with New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Miami and Orlando leading the way. During the past four weeks, there has also been a strong uptick in inbound flight bookings to Ft. Lauderdale, increasing 7 percent since this time last month.

The top source markets for inbound international travel are Canada, Germany, France and Brazil. Chile and Japan also recently joined the top origination markets with inbound flight bookings increasing significantly during the past four weeks by 28 percent and 8 percent, respectively.

Outbound Travel Nears Pre-Pandemic Levels

Driven by robust growth of 35 percent, compared to 2021, U.S. outbound flight bookings have reached near pre-pandemic levels, falling just 5 percent short of 2019 bookings. Destinations such as Canada, Mexico, the Dominican Republic, U.K. and Italy top the list for U.S. travelers looking to get away. Joining the top destinations, the Philippines has seen an 8 percent spike in outbound flight bookings during the last four weeks alone.

Source: WWTC

Related Stories

Stats: Europe’s Aviation Chaos Crushes Confidence in Flying

Tourism to Contribute $2.6 Billion to U.S. GDP Over Next Decade

Hotel Guest Satisfaction Drops as Travel Volume, Room Rates Rise

Stats: U.S. Travel Demand Holds Strong Despite Inflation