Skift Travel News Blog

Short stories and posts about the daily news happenings around the travel industry.

Tourism

Spending by International Visitors to U.S. Rises 57 Percent to $16 Billion 

1 year ago

International visitors spent $15.9 billion on travel to, and tourism-related activities within, the U.S. in November, up 57 percent year over year, according to the National Travel and Tourism Office.  That’s an improvement from November 2021, but it’s billions of dollars down from international visitor spending in pre-pandemic November 2019, which had $20 billion.

From January to November, international visitors to the U.S. spent more than $146 billion, up more than 103 year over year and translating into an average of over $437 million per day going into the U.S. economy.

The U.S. ended up with a travel surplus in November. Americans traveling abroad spent more than $15.2 billion in November, yielding a trade balance of $703 million. The U.S. also had a travel trade surplus in October.

International visitor purchases of travel and tourism-related goods and services, which includes entertainment, food and recreation, totaled $8.6 billion in November 2022, up 77 percent compared to the previous year. That’s below the total in November 2019, when international visitor purchases amounted to $11.7 billion.

Tourism

International Travelers to U.S. Spent $16 Billion in October, a New Recent High

2 years ago

International inbound visitors spent more than $15.8 billion on travel to, and tourism-related activities within, the United States in October, making it the highest monthly level of spending since Covid struck in February 2020, according to the National Travel and Tourism Office. 

Year to date international travel spending has accumulated to $129.9 billion, up more than 110 percent year over year. That translated into $427 million spending per day for the U.S. economy.

International travelers spent a total of $8.8 billion on lodging, recreation and other travel and tourism-related goods and services in October, according to the National Travel and Tourism Office. International travel spending for that month was down nearly $3 billion compared to October 2019, which had $11.7 billion.

The U.S. also came out with a trade surplus in October. Americans traveling abroad spent around $15.8 billion, giving the U.S. a slight trade plus of $58 million for October. In September, the U.S. had a trade deficit of more than $1 billion. 

One likely reason why the surplus was so small has been the ongoing delay to process first-time visitor visa applications at American embassies in multiple countries outside the U.S. Visa Waiver Program. The U.S. Travel Association estimates the average wait time for first-time visa applicants from key U.S. markets has exploded to 400 days.