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WhatTravel spending in 2020 is predicted to plunge 45% from 2019, with full pandemic recovery potentially stalling until 2024 or later, according to a new projection from U.S. Travel Association. This latest forecast shows a worse outlook than previously thought and reflects a 34% drop in domestic leisure travel spend and a 55% drop in domestic business travel.
The organization is, once again, calling on lawmakers to provide a new COVID-19 relief package that will aid the industry’s recovery. Its priorities include enhancing and extending the Paycheck Protection Program and Coronavirus Relief Fund (established by the CARES Act) through 2021, in addition to providing emergency assistance to U.S. airports.
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Why It MattersThe industry’s repeated calls to Congress are beginning to sound like a broken record. Many travel businesses were unable to access early rounds of funding, and this industry now accounts for one-third of overall unemployment, with nearly 40% of its jobs eliminated over a seven-month period. If we don’t want this new reality to become permanent, Congress must act swiftly to pass another relief package — and before the new administration takes office. Anything less is unacceptable.
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Fast Facts- Some $617 billion will be spent on travel in the U.S. in 2020, down from the 1.13 trillion spent overall in 2019 and is a $5 billion decrease from U.S. Travel’s previous forecast for 2020, released in July.
- Despite modest growth over the summer, an additional 1 million direct travel jobs (50% of pre-pandemic levels) are expected to disappear by the end of 2020 if no additional relief is secured.
- Inbound international travel is set to dip 77%, the most of all sectors evaluated (followed by 55% in domestic business and 34% in domestic leisure travel).
- Federal aid ran dry early in the pandemic; many businesses that did acquire temporary relief have used up funds.
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What They Are Saying“A lot of businesses that need help to retain and re-hire their people won’t be there in January if we wait until the next Congress to get more aid passed,” said Roger Dow, president and CEO of U.S. Travel Association. “The pain among travel employers is extremely acute, and so is the frustration that Washington has been unable to act so far given the size and obviousness of this problem.”
The DetailsU.S. Travel Associationwww.ustravel.org