WASHINGTON -- The economic slowdown apparently hasn't dampened
America's desire to travel, according to the Travel Industry
Association's quarterly Traveler Sentiment Index.
Overall, the index, which gauges consumer interest in leisure
travel and their perceived ability to travel, hit 101.0 for the
first quarter of 2001, up 3.7 points from the last quarter of
TIA president William Norman said the index shows that Americans
still have "positive perceptions" toward travel.
He added that "there is currently no indication of a subsequent
downturn in leisure travel volume."
Regionally, the Traveler Sentiment Index showed its highest
increase in the Northeast, rising 10.6 points to 108.7.
The Midwest and South posted smaller gains -- 4.1% and 1.5%,
However, the index fell 2.5 points in the West, mainly because
of large declines in the affordability of travel and the ability to
travel based on personal time, according to TIA.