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

December 18, 2014

International Visitors Spend $18.5 Billion in October 2014

International visitors inject more than $597 million a day into U.S. economy in October

WASHINGTON - U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker announced that international visitors spent $18.5 billion on travel to, and tourism-related activities within, the United States in October, an increase of nearly 3 percent when compared to October 2013.

“The data demonstrates that we are well on our way to achieving another record-setting year for travel and tourism exports, and that the United States is likely to see more than $222 billion in annual international visitor spending for the very first time,” said Secretary Pritzker. “Increased travel and tourism is a critical tool for economic growth and job creation in the United States, which is why President Obama created the first-ever national strategy to attract more international visitors to our country. We will continue to focus on the growth potential of this sector and on achieving the President’s goal of welcoming 100 million international visitors and the estimated $250 billion they will spend per year by the end of 2021.”

International visitors have spent $185.1 billion on U.S. travel and tourism-related goods and services year to date (January through October), an increase of 4 percent when compared to the same period last year; conversely, Americans have spent an estimated $121.4 billion aboard, resulting in a balance of trade surplus nearly $64 billion year to date.

  • Travel Receipts: Purchases of travel and tourism-related goods and services by international visitors traveling in the United States totaled $11.5 billion during October, an ever-so-slight increase of less than 1 percent when compared to last year. 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 62 percent of total U.S. travel and tourism exports for October.

  • Passenger Fare Receipts: Fares received by U.S. carriers from international visitors totaled $3.7 billion for the month, an increase of nearly 6 percent when compared to October 2013. Passenger fare receipts accounted for 20 percent of total U.S. travel and tourism exports for October.

  • Medical/Education/Short-Term Worker(1): Expenditures for educational and health-related tourism, along with all expenditures by border, seasonal, and other short-term workers, totaled more than $3.4 billion in October, an increase of nearly 7 percent when compared to the same period last year. Medical tourism, education, and short-term worker receipts accounted for slightly more than 18 percent of total U.S. travel and tourism exports during October.

Change in Monthly  U.S. Travel and Tourism Exports/Imports
Source: U.S. Department of Commerce, National Travel and Tourism Office and the Bureau of Economic Analysis(1).

(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 our 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. Therefore, all travel and tourism-related trade data have been revised back to 1999. To learn more, please visit: https://travel.trade.gov/pdf/restructuring-travel.pdf

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 1999, please visit the NTTO site at: < https://travel.trade.gov/outreachpages/download_data_table/Monthly_Exports_Imports_Balance.xlsx >.