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July 20, 2010

U.S. Travel and Tourism Satellite Accounts: First Quarter 2010

Growth of Travel and Tourism Spending Outpaced the Growth of U.S. Economy

The U.S. Department of Commerce recently announced that real spending (adjusted for changes in price) on travel and tourism increased at an annual rate of 3.9 percent in Q1 2010, following a decrease of 1.5 percent (revised) in Q4 2009. By comparison, real gross domestic product (GDP) increased 2.7 percent in Q1 2010 after increasing 5.6 percent in Q4 2009.

  • Real Tourism Spending. Real spending on traveler accommodations increased 11.0 percent in Q1 2010 after declining 7.9 percent in Q4 2009. Spending on passenger air transportation increased 4.5 percent in Q1 2010 after a decline of 9.8 percent in Q4 2009.

  • Tourism& Prices. Prices for passenger air transportation increased for the third straight quarter, rising 13.3 percent in Q1 2010, 36.3 percent in Q4 2009, and 2.4 percent in Q3 2009. Prices for traveler accommodations turned down in Q1 2010, declining 6.4 percent after increasing 3.1 percent in Q4 2009. Overall, average prices of all travel and tourism goods and services rose 3.5 percent in Q1 2010.

  • Tourism Employment. Direct travel and tourism employment remained unchanged (0.0%) in Q1 2010 with gains in food services (1.0%)and shopping (1.1%) helping to offset losses in air transportation services (-1.4%) and traveler accommodations (-1.5%).

Growth of 'Travel and Tourism Output vs. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) '
Source: U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis (June 2010).

The Bureau of Economic Analysis, through funding provided by the Office of Travel and Tourism Industries, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, produces the U.S Travel and Tourism Satellite Accounts (TTSAs) from which these estimates were derived.

Travel and Tourism Satellite Accounts form an indispensable statistical instrument that allows the United States to measure the relative size and importance of the travel and tourism industry, along with its contribution to gross domestic product (GDP).

Approved by the United Nations in March 2002 and endorsed by the U.N. Statistical Commission, TTSAs have become the international standard by which travel and tourism is measured. In fact, more than fifty countries around the world have embraced travel and tourism satellite accounting as the only comprehensive, comparable, and credible measure of travel and tourism and its impact on national economies.

For more information on TTSAs, please visit: < http://www.bea.gov/industry/iedguide.htm#ttsa_ou >.

To view the Q1 2010 release in its entirety, visit: < http://www.bea.gov/newsreleases/industry/tourism/2010/tour110.htm >.

Subscribe to the Bureau of Economic Analysis’ TTSA newsletter: < http://service.govdelivery.com/service/multi_subscribe.html?code=USBEA >.