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Date: Fri, 28 March 2003
From: TInews Announcement <announce@tinet.ita.doc.gov>
To: TInews Announcement <tiannounce@tinet.ita.doc.gov>
Subject: Re-Igniting Growth in Travel & Tourism Summit – April 9 - 10, 2003 – Washington, D.C

=== TINEWS ===================================

An information service from Tourism Industries
U.S. International Trade Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce

March 28, 2003

Highlights of 2001 Data Release: Revised arrivals data, state and city visitation estimates and traveler characteristics data now available

Contact: Office of Travel and Tourism Industries
E-mail: otti@trade.gov
Web: http://tinet.ita.doc.gov
Phone: (202) 482-0140, Fax: (202) 482-2887

The Office of Travel and Tourism Industries (OTTI) officially released the revised 2001 arrivals data for the United States. With the revisions to the arrivals data, the United States hosted almost 45 million international visitors in 2001. This was down almost 12 percent from the record arrivals in 2000. The 12 percent decline was the worst decline for a single year in the history of tracking arrivals to the country. The declines were even more dramatic in the overseas markets (which exclude Canada and Mexico). Overseas arrivals totaled 21.8 million, down 16 percent from the record overseas arrival total in 2000. The world market share of arrivals for the U.S. has experienced an all time low of 6.5%. This is a dramatic change from our peak of 9.4% in 1992.

The top five overseas markets to the United States were the United Kingdom (4.1 million arrivals, down 13%); Japan (4.1 million, down 19%); Germany (1.3 million, down 28%); France (876,000 down 19%); and Korea (618,000, down only 7%). Among the top 50 markets generating visitors to the country in 2001, only three posted growth rates for the year. There were numerous shifts in the ranking of arrivals to the country, starting with the United Kingdom surpassing Japan to become the largest overseas market for the country. There are numerous tables on the OTTI web site that provide arrivals data for the country, including one table on arrivals for all countries generating visitors to the USA in 2001, go to: https://travel.trade.gov/outreachpages/inbound.general_information.inbound_overview.html

Spending by international travelers to the U.S. also decreased by 12 percent in 2001 to $91.1 billion. This is only the third decline in travel spending to the country between 1983 and 2001. The top five markets generating travel and passenger fare exports for the United States were: The United Kingdom ($11.9 billion, down 16%); Japan ($11.7 billion, down 16%); Canada ($8.2 billion, down 7%); Mexico ($6.3 billion, up 1%); and Germany ($3.7 billion, down 27%). Spending figures for over 30 countries are available for 1998-2001 on the OTTI web site, as well as a time line for total spending by visitors to the country for 1991-2001.

The spending by international travelers to the United States is an export. The $91 billion spent by these visitors makes travel the third largest export sector according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). Capital Goods ($322 billion), Industrial Supplies ($160 billion) are the top two export categories, and while Other Private Services is listed as an $108 billion export category, according to BEA they consider it a composite category and officially state that international travel is the third largest export for the country. Total exports for merchandise goods dropped to $719 billion in 2001. This is the first decline in the export of goods since 1985. Service exports also decline in 2001 from $292 billion in 2000 to $279 billion in 2001. This is the first decline ever registered in service exports for the country for the year 1960-2001.

The 2001 overseas visitation estimates are provided for 34 states. The top state visited for overseas travelers Florida, New York, California, Hawaii, and Nevada. Take a look at the top states table on the OTTI web site there have been some shifts in the top state markets since 2000.

Overseas visitation estimates are available for 54 cities. The top five cities visited by overseas travelers in 2001 were: New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, Orlando, and San Francisco. With a 16 percent decline in overseas travel to the United States, most destinations should expect declines in their level of overseas visitation. To see our 2001 estimates, visit the OTTI web site at:

Market specific data that provides visitation estimates and selected traveler characteristics data is also available for nine world regions and over 15 countries. State and city visitation estimates are provided when we have a statistically significant sample for the destination. To view our estimates for travel by market to the states and cities, click on the world region or country of interest and go to the market research section of the page. The first item or link after the market research title bar is the 2001 profile. Go to: https://travel.trade.gov/outreachpages/index.html#inbound

There are several other tables on the revised 2001 arrivals and traveler characteristics and visitation. See the OTTI web site at: https://travel.trade.gov/

The staff at OTTI would like to thank the industry for their patience in getting this data out to the industry. As the only source for comprehensive, comparable estimates of international travel to the United States, and the destinations visited, we try to ensure the data issued is the best possible. In 2001, changes in the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) policy on who was required to complete the (I-94) international arrival cards forced OTTI into issuing preliminary data until we could obtain access to and complete a review of the data to eliminate the transit passengers INS now counts as arrivals. The INS database is the only source available to provide an accurate count on the number of arrivals to the United States. The policy change occurred only for the September 2001-December 2001, and all future arrivals data to date. A record-by-record review was required to eliminate the transit passengers (almost 600,000 overseas transit passengers were eliminated). The arrivals database is also used to expand the survey estimates for state and city visitation so accuracy is important. Without taking out the transit passengers the estimates for both destinations and ports of entry would have grossly distorted.

The revisions of the arrivals data must also be implemented for 2002. Work is nearly completed and we hope to issue the calendar year 2002 arrivals to the United States estimates and counts by mid-April 2003. The 2003 arrivals data issued by OTTI will exclude the transit passengers, so no further revisions should be needed.

If you have any questions, or would like additional information on any of the 2001 arrivals and visitation data released, please contact our office at: otti@trade.gov

Thank you.


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Tourism Industries, International Trade Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce, Room 2073
Washington, D.C. 20230
(202) 482-0140, fax: (202) 482-2887
e-mail: otti@trade.gov

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