by Allen J. Sheinman | May 09, 2018
International inbound travel to the United States rose by an impressive 11 percent in March, year-over-year, according to the latest Travel Trends Index compiled by the U.S. Travel Association. The report, released yesterday, said the rise was likely due in part to an earlier timing of Easter (April 1), and found that overall, travel to and within the U.S. was up by 3.4 percent, year-over-year, in March.
By itself, domestic travel registered a modest growth of 2.6 percent, which the report said was largely a sign of weak domestic business travel, up by only 0.2 percent in March.
Despite the encouraging news concerning visitors from outside the country, research demonstrated that the U.S. was lagging in the face of a steep overall growth in international travel. The U.S. share of the global international market declined from a peak of 13.6 percent in 2015 to 11.9 percent last year.
"We are not experiencing the decline in international inbound travel that many feared," noted David Huether, U.S. Travel's senior vice president for research. "However, the U.S. is not keeping pace with the global travel boom. As a result, we are continuing to lose market share to competitors."
Projecting ahead, as noted in the report's predictive Leading Travel Index, travel to and within the U.S. is expected to grow by 2.2 percent through September, with inbound travel growing by 3 percent during that period.