The Survey of International Air Travelers questionnaire was developed in 1982 with revisions in 1985, 1990, 1993, 1996, and 2012. Changes in content were based on input from the travel industry including an airline user group panel. Format and design changes were coordinated through the U.S. Bureau of the Census. The paper-based survey instrument is available in 12 languages including: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. An English version e-Survey and other electronic versions of the survey instrument have been tested over time and so far, the paper version of the questionnaire still obtains more responses than any other version.
Questions are grouped into the relative categories: travel planning, trip data including origin-destination(s), trip expenditures, choice factors and passenger demographics.
As a federal government survey, OMB No. 0625-0227, both the program and any questionnaire changes are subject to clearance by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Although the Survey cannot be changed on demand, NTTO intends to solicit input from the private and public sector stakeholders in advance of making further revisions to the Survey. Since questionnaire revisions will include changes to data processing programs these efforts will be subject to the availability of funds.
OMB clearance normally covers a period of three years. Since the program was re-approved in 2015 the next expiration date is set for April 30, 2018. It is expected that not later than September 2017 a Federal Register Notice will be issued with a 60-day public comment period. All letters obtained as a result of the Federal Register Notice must be summarized and responded to. The package is then submitted to OMB for clearance. The entire review and clearance process of the questionnaire by OMB takes between four and five months.
The current version of the questionnaire and the 1996 version can be viewed and downloaded by visiting