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TI News: An information service from the National Travel & Tourism Office (NTTO)

July 15, 2015


WASHINGTON - Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker announced that international visitors spent more than $18 billion on travel to, and tourism-related activities within, the United States in May. International travelers have added $93 billion to the U.S. economy so far this year, and this increase in spending f has supported more than one million jobs throughout the United States.

“The travel and tourism sector continues to contribute to the strength of America's economy," said Secretary Pritzker. "International visitors spent more than $18 billion in May, and have added $93 billion to our economy this year. The Obama Administration is committed to improving the visitor experience across our country to ensure the United States remains the world's most attractive travel destination."

  • Travel Receipts: Purchases of travel and tourism-related goods and services by international visitors traveling in the United States totaled $11.6 billion during May. These goods and services include food, lodging, recreation, gifts, entertainment, local transportation in the United States, and other items incidental to foreign travel. Travel receipts accounted for slightly more than 62 percent of total U.S. travel and tourism exports during May 2015.

  • Passenger Fare Receipts: Fares received by U.S. carriers from international visitors totaled $3.3 billion for the month, a slight decrease when compared to May 2014. Passenger fare receipts accounted for nearly 18 percent of total U.S. travel and tourism exports during May.

  • Medical/Education/Short-Term Worker: Expenditures for educational and health-related tourism, along with all expenditures by border, seasonal, and other short-term workers, totaled $3.8 billion in May, an increase of 10 percent when compared to the same period last year. Medical tourism, education, and short-term worker receipts accounted for 20 percent of total U.S. travel and tourism exports during May 2015.

Year-to-date international visitor spending is up 1 percent, totaling $93.5 billion for the first five months of 2015. Conversely, U.S. resident spending abroad is up more than 6 percent during the same period, totaling $63.0 billion on travel and tourism-related goods and services, resulting in a $30.4 billion trade surplus for travel and tourism through May 2015.


(1) In June 2014 the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) completed the most comprehensive restructuring of the U.S. international economic accounts since 1976 in an effort to bring U.S. international accounts into closer conformity with international guidelines. As a result, BEA now uses a broader definition of travel that includes education-related and health-related travel and expenditures on goods and services by border, seasonal, and other short-term workers. To learn more, please visit: https://travel.trade.gov/pdf/restructuring-travel.pdf

The National Travel and Tourism Office (NTTO) is responsible for collecting, analyzing, and disseminating international travel and tourism statistics for the U.S. Travel and Tourism Statistical System. For more monthly travel and tourism-related trade data dating back to 1992, please visit the NTTO site at: https://travel.trade.gov/outreachpages/download_data_table/Monthly_Exports_Imports_Balance.xlsx.