States are taking different approaches to reopening and closing during the pandemic, and the economy has felt the effects. More than half of states have put in place nationwide mask mandates to help slow the spread of the coronavirus. Some state and local jurisdictions have limited hours to limit large groups from gathering. Schools are in the spotlight as the fall plans roll out and the first few days get closer for most of the country.
These five charts illustrate trends in key industries that will help track progress as we reopen in the United States.
The driving and walking instructions from Apple's navigation system Maps have shown little movement since the beginning of July. Requests for both are still well above pre-pandemic levels, as was the case with most pandemics. Hiking and driving requests correspond to the pandemic heights that were observed earlier in the summer. Inquiries about transit directions also stagnated and were around 50% lower than on January 13th. Transit direction requests have not changed for most of the summer.
Despite some daily deviations, bookings in US restaurants are almost 60% lower than last year, according to data from the booking app OpenTable. The low bookings reflect the ongoing uncertainty about eating and going out, compounded by officials' concerns about the role of bars in the spread of the coronavirus. The ongoing uncertainty also shows that while most places eat in restaurants, the public is not as inclined to go to a restaurant as in previous years.
According to the global hotel research company STR, the national hotel occupancy is almost 50%, which corresponds to an increase of 1% compared to the previous week. In July 2019, the US load factor was 73.8%. The average daily cost of a hotel room continued to trend up around $ 1 each week, now at just over $ 100. Norfolk / Virginia Beach, Virginia, remained a top travel market – and the only one to hit 60% capacity – as it did most of the summer. Detroit maintained over 50% capacity for an additional week after previously reaching less than 30% capacity. San Diego and Philadelphia have joined the list of cities with reported hotels with more than half capacity. On Oahu Island and New Orleans, capacity was below 30%.
The number of passengers traveling through security checkpoints at the airport is still between 20% and 30% of the previous year, according to the Transportation Security Administration. Although there were some signs of life in early July, with some days being almost 40% of the same days last year, the numbers have continued to settle down to around a quarter of previous years. Some airlines have reduced their offers due to international travel restrictions and an increase in coronavirus infection rates. Airline officials say they don't expect any recovery until a vaccine is available. The small number of passengers reflects the ongoing financial turmoil that the industry is facing.
According to the Mortgage Bankers Association, U.S. home purchases were up 20% year over year for another week. However, mortgage applications fell 5.1%. Industry leaders say the uncertainty reflects a lack of stability in jobs and the economy due to the pandemic. They expect this interest to remain relatively unchanged for the foreseeable future.