Black Meetings and Tourism

May/June 2012

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INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL V AND TOURISM SPENDING IN UNITED STATES SHOWS CONTINUED GROWTH isitors Spent a Record $10.1 Billion in February The U.S. Department of Commerce announced that international visitors spent an estimated $13.3 billion on trav- el to, and tourism-related activities with- in, the United States during the month of February — nearly $1.6 billion more, or a 14 percent increase from spending in February 2011. Year to date, U.S. travel and tourism exports have grown more than 11 percent in 2012. "Today's data is yet further evidence that the United States remains one of the top destinations for international visitors from around the world," said Commerce Under Secretary for International Trade Francisco Sánchez. "We have places and working hard to tell folks about what an amazing place America is – whether you travel five or 5,000 miles to get here." Purchases of travel and tourism- related goods and services by inter- national visitors traveling in the United States hit a record-breaking $10.1 billion during February, an increase of 13 percent when com- pared to last year. These goods and services include food, lodging, recre- ation, gifts, entertainment, local transportation in the United States, and other items incidental to foreign travel. Fares received by U.S. carriers and U.S. vessel operators from interna- tional visitors increased more than 16 percent to $3.1 billion for the month, an increase of nearly $435 million when compared to last year and a mere $175 million shy of breaking the record set in August 2011. While spending by international visitors has hit records, so have arrivals. In January 2012, 4.5 million international visitors traveled to the United States, a seven percent increase over January 2011. January 2012 registered the 10th straight month of increases in total U.S. visits. In January 2012, the top inbound markets continued to be Canada and Mexico. Visits from Canada increased nine percent while arrivals from Mexico grew four percent. Seven of the top inbound overseas regional markets posted increases in visits in January 2012, while Western Europe was flat and the Caribbean region decreased four percent. The 2012 data to date builds on seen long-term growth in both arrivals and spending and hope to continue that trend with the focus provided by the Obama Administration on this growing sector. That is why we are making it even easier to visit America's most amazing 66 increases in international and domes- tic tourism spending in 2011, which showed an increase of 8.1 percent, supporting an additional 103,000 jobs for a total of 7.6 million. For more information, visit http://- Black Meetings & Tourism May/June 2012: TRAVEL OUTPACING OTHER U. S. EXPORTS research at the U.S. Travel Associat- ion, provides analysis on recent Commerce Depart-ment announce- ment on international trade: "For the travel industry, March D was one for the record books. Monthly travel exports reached an all-time high of $13.7 billion, surpass- ing the prior peak of $13.4 billion reached in September 2011. "After a slowdown in the last quar- ter, today's Commerce Department report shows that travel exports rebounded sharply in the first quar- ter, rising at an annual rate of 20 per- cent compared to the fourth quarter of last year – twice as fast as the increase in overall goods exports dur- ing the same period. Moreover, dur- ing the 12 months ending in March, travel exports were up a very strong 12.6 percent, which is close to twice as fast as the 6.5 percent increase in overall goods exports during the past year. "The fact that travel exports are growing more quickly than other exports is one of the key reasons why the travel industry has been creating jobs at a faster clip than the rest of the economy. For every 33 overseas visitors who travel to America, one U.S. job – a job that can't be out- sourced – is created. "The challenge now is to build on this recent success and begin to reclaim the share of global travel lost during the prior decade." INDUSTRY HITS RECORD HIGH IN MARCH avid Huether, senior vice president of economics and

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