© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: People walk around the terminal at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York
By David Shepardson
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. tour group announced Tuesday that travel expenses are expected to decrease by more than $ 500 billion in 2020 and will not recover to pre-coronavirus levels until 2024.
The U.S. Travel Association's spending for 2019 is $ 617 billion, compared to its July forecast of $ 622 billion, compared to $ 1.13 trillion in 2019.
The decline reflects the dramatic decline in business travel. The group said the industry has lost nearly 40%, or 3.5 million, of all direct travel jobs and warned that an additional 1 million jobs could be lost by the end of the year without additional government relief.
The group predicts a 75% decrease in international visitor numbers in the US in 2020, representing a decrease in spending of $ 119 billion. The United States is currently banning most non-US citizens who have recently been to Europe, China, Brazil, and a few other countries.
The forecast assumes that the new COVID-19 infections in the US have reached an all-time high and many US states are enacting new ordinances restricting indoor activities and, in some cases, temporarily banning eating indoors.
"Many companies that need help keeping and hiring their employees won't be there in January if we wait until the next convention for more help," said Roger Dow, chief executive of the US Travel Association.
The U.S. Department of Transportation announced last week that the country's airlines carried 65% fewer passengers in September than in the same month last year, the smallest decrease since March. According to airlines, the demand for travel continued to fall 65% in November.
The U.S. cruise industry has agreed to suspend cruises through December 31, and many major tourist attractions such as Disneyland in California and Broadway in New York will remain closed. Others remain with limited capacity.
Airlines pushed for $ 25 billion in support again after a $ 25 billion program approved by Congress in March, consisting primarily of cash grants for payroll, expired on September 30.
American Airlines (NASDAQ 🙂 and United Airlines employed 32,000 people last month.
Hotels, car rental companies and other tour operators are still struggling, even as demand for the coronavirus pandemic has improved from lows.
Marriott announced on Nov. 6 that North American hotel occupancy rose 37% in the third quarter, nearly double the last three months, largely due to an increase in vacation travel.
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