Skift Take

Asia and Latin America are both the benefactors of an improving U.S. economy that is giving residents the ability and confidence to travel overseas again.

The number of U.S. citizens traveling abroad in the first six months of 2014 increased six percent year-over-year to 32.6 million, according to monthly statistics released this week by the U.S. National Travel and Tourism Office.

Every month, the NTTO releases data regarding recent travel activity, including details about outbound travel from the United States. This is the most recent month for which this information is available.

Slightly more than half of those travelers, 53 percent, crossed borders to Mexico (38 percent) and Canada (15 percent). The other 47 percent of U.S. citizens traveled overseas, with the Europe and the Caribbean, unsurprisingly, capturing the greatest market share.

Worth noting is that Asia captured 7 percent of the market share in the first six months of the year, which was more than Central America (5 percent) and South America (3 percent) despite the distance and higher airfare needed to get there.

Monthly statistics; however, show a slightly different trend.

In June, U.S. outbound travel grew 10 percent to 7.3 million travelers. The regions with the highest growth in terms of inbound U.S. visitors were South America, up 21 percent, and Mexico, up 14 percent.

Asia still experienced growth, but at a slightly slower rate of 8 percent.

U.S. Citizen Travel to International Regions in 2014 by Month (000s)

Regions Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Total YTD % Change YTD Market Share YTD
North America 2,439 2,442 2,846 2,750 3,031 3,693 17,202 14.1% 52.7%
Europe 578 497 807 868 1,306 1,614 5,670 4.8% 17.4%
Caribbean 499 550 705 630 624 743 3,751 9.2% 11.5%
Asia 376 313 397 382 379 424 2,272 4% 7%
South America 128 138 155 123 144 208 896 4.1% 2.7%
Central America 219 226 283 214 209 301 1,452 10.2% 4.5%
Oceania 52 63 60 41 46 45 307 6% 0.9%
Middle East 140 119 141 142 162 181 885 10.8% 2.7%
Africa 24 21 28 28 36 41 177 -0.5% 0.5

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Tags: ntto, skiftstats

Photo Credit: A tourist references a foldout map at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin. Daniel Foster / Flickr