International Arrivals To The United States For June and Second Quarter 2004

The U.S. welcomed 9.6 million international visitors in the second quarter of 2004. This was an increase of 20 percent compared to the second quarter 2003. All of the top 20 visitor markets registered gains for the quarter.

Total international arrivals (includes overseas, Canada and Mexico) to the U.S. began on a positive note in 2004, with the first quarter being up 12 percent. This followed the lead of the fourth quarter 2003, which was up three percent and the only quarter to experience growth last year. April arrivals jumped by 28 percent, May increased by 20 percent and June was up 13 percent, with significant contributions to growth from Overseas markets. The larger increases in April and May were not surprising given last year’s occurrence of the Iraqi War (commencing 3/19) and the SARS epidemic in March 2003. Also, 2Q 2004 was up 10 percent from 2Q 2002, but was still down almost 12 percent compared to 2Q 2001

International
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The increase in overseas arrivals (excluding Canada and Mexico) was again the major driver to the overall increase in international tourism during 2Q. Overseas arrivals totaled 5.1 million in the second quarter, up 27 percent. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 33 percent, May and June, each up 24 percent.

Overseas
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Travel to the U.S. increased from ALL world regions in the second quarter of 2004. Visitation from Western Europe and Asia accounted for three-quarters of all overseas arrivals.

Arrivals from Western Europe totaled 2.4 million for 2Q, up 20 percent. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 26 percent, May and June each up 17 percent. The U. K. and Germany (see country synopsis, below) accounted for 60 percent of the arrivals from the region.

Asian travelers totaled 1.45 million for 2Q, up 54 percent. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 68 percent, May, up 54 percent and June, up 43 percent. Japan continues to be the major driver in this region (see country synopsis, below).

The turnaround story continues to be South America. Registering 410,000 arrivals in 2Q, up 16 percent, South America experienced two successive positive quarters for the first time since the first quarter of 2001! Brazil was the strong performer in the region again this quarter (see country analysis, below). Venezuela is reversing its 2003 trend of chronic double-digit declines by registering growth rates of 17 percent in the second quarter. Colombia was negative for most of 2003, but has two quarters of growth in 2004, up 13 percent for 2Q. Arrivals from Argentina, a smaller market with 44,000 travelers in 2Q, grew 30 percent for the quarter.

The remaining world regions continued to show improvement in the second quarter.

Travelers from: #Arrivals – Q2 % Change Q2 04/03 Comments - March
Caribbean 255,649 16% Dominican Rep. up 36%
Oceania 182,833 41% Australia up 50%
Central America 178,232 12% El Salvador up 19 %
Middle East 119,371 14% Israel up 20%
Eastern Europe 103,703 13% Poland up 7%
Africa 65,409 11% South Africa up 7%

Top Visitor Markets:

Top 20 markets in order of 2003 rankings based on the number of arrivals.

Canada:
Canadian arrivals totaled 3.4 million in the second quarter, a 14 percent increase from second quarter 2003. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 25 percent, May, up 20 percent and June, down almost two percent. Canadian arrivals-by-air, however, increased by five percent in June while those arriving by land dropped four percent.

Canada
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Mexico:
The U.S. Department of Commerce Mexico Travel Barometer Survey reported “… respondents predicted a slightly more positive outlook (for all traffic – both border zone and travel to the interior) for the first half of 2004…” based on surveys conducted in late February.

In fact, during the first half, arrivals to the U.S. interior* were up eight percent. In the second quarter, over 1.0 million Mexicans visited the U.S. interior, up nine percent. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 16 percent, May, up two percent and June, up six percent. Of total arrivals to the U.S. interior in June, 118,000 traveled by air, up 15 percent from June 2003.

Mexico
(U.S. ‘Interior’ is beyond the 40-kilometer border zone in the U.S.)
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United Kingdom:
The U.S. Department of Commerce U. K. Travel Barometer reported, “…three quarters (75%) of survey respondents (polled in mid/late January) predicted first and second quarter 2004 travel demand to be higher or much higher, compared to 2003. No respondents predicted demand to decrease.”

In fact, U. K. visitation increased 15 percent in the first quarter. Arrivals totaled 1.1 million in the second quarter, up 12 percent. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 19 percent, May, up six percent and June, up 11 percent. The U. K. was the only one of the top five inbound markets to show annual growth in 2003, at three percent. Including 2Q 2004, there have been five successive quarterly increases in arrivals from the U. K.

The U. K. accounted for 46 percent of all arrivals from Western Europe in the second quarter.

UK
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Japan:
Japanese visitation totaled 871,000 in the second quarter, up 65 percent. This marks the third successive quarter of growth in the Japanese market (4Q03 up three percent and 1Q04 up 17 percent). Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 78 percent, May, up 65 percent and June, up 55 percent.

Second quarter arrivals accounted for 60 percent of all Asian visitors.

Japan
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Germany:
The U.S. Department of Commerce U. K. Travel Barometer reported, based on survey conducted in mid/late January, “…2004 travel demand is predicted to be higher! All respondents projected higher (62%) or much higher (39%) travel demand to the U.S. for first quarter and second quarter 2004, compared to the same travel periods a year ago. Inquiries and bookings for first and second quarter, at the time of the survey, grew 10 - 15 percent on average compared to a year ago.”

In fact, German visitation increased 21 percent in the first quarter. Arrivals totaled 356,000 in the second quarter, up 22 percent. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 20 percent, May, up 28 percent and June, up 17 percent. Second quarter 2004 marks the third successive quarterly increase in arrivals from Germany.

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France:
Arrivals to the U.S. from France totaled 199,000 in the second quarter, up 26 percent, improving on first quarter growth of six percent. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 29 percent, May, up 22 percent and June, up 25 percent.

South Korea:
Visitation growth continued through the second quarter after bouncing back in the first quarter from a negative performance in the fourth quarter 2003. Arrivals to the U.S. from South Korea totaled 156,000 in the second quarter, up seven percent. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 22 percent, May, up three percent and June, up three percent.

Italy:
Italian visitation achieved solid growth in the second quarter, up 34 percent, exceeding the growth rate in the first quarter, which was up 16 percent. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 40 percent, May, up 29 percent and June, up 34 percent.

Australia:
Australian visitation has been performing well in 2004. After an overall flat performance in 2003, the growth in arrivals during the first quarter was up 25 percent. Second quarter travelers totaled 143,000, up 44 percent. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 45 percent, May, up 38 percent and June, up 50 percent.

Netherlands:
Reversing course from 2003, arrivals were up 14 percent for the first quarter. Improving on that performance the U.S. hosted 109,000 visitors from the Netherlands in the second quarter, up 22 percent.
Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 38 percent, May, up 28 percent, but dropped off in June, to one percent.

Brazil:
Traffic started to turn positive in the second quarter 2003, reversing a trend of double-digit decreases beginning in January 2003. Following the lead set in the fourth quarter, with traffic up 15 percent, the first quarter 2004 increased 18 percent. Arrivals in the second quarter totaled 92,000, up 19 percent. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 41 percent, May, up 10 percent and June, up 13 percent.

Venezuela:
After double-digit declines throughout 2003, arrivals began to improve in the first quarter of 2004, notably achieving a less than one percent decline. However, Venezuelan visitation grew by 17 percent in the second quarter, totaling 70,000 visitors. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 22 percent, May, up eight percent and June, up 22 percent.

Spain:
The U.S. welcomed 85,000 visitors in the second quarter, up 44 percent. This marked the fourth successive quarter of growth in Spanish visitation and improved on 1Q’s 24 percent growth. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 66 percent, May, up 36 percent and June, up 32 percent.

Colombia:
Similar to Venezuela, Colombian arrivals experienced double-digit declines during the first half of 2003. Unlike Venezuela, Colombia shifted up to single-digit declines in the second half. In the first quarter of 2004 there was a positive swing, with Colombian arrivals up three percent. Visitation grew by 13 percent in the second quarter with 87,000 arrivals. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up four percent, May, up 11 percent and June, up 20 percent. Also, it is noted that for the first six months of 2004, Colombia has moved ahead of Venezuela in the total number of arrivals.

India:
Arrivals from India totaled almost 35,000 for June and 103,000 for the second quarter, up 21 percent and 24 percent, respectively. Historically, Indian visitation is at a relatively high level. In 2003, visitation was down less than one percent from the 2000 peak. First half arrivals 2004 totaled 164,000, up 13 percent from the first half of 2000!

PRC & Hong Kong:
The year-over-year evidence of recovery from the 2003 SARS epidemic began to be noticed in February. First quarter arrivals were up 11 percent followed by a 94 percent surge in the second quarter, totaling 80,000 visitors. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 99 percent, May, up 120 percent and June, up 73 percent.

PRC visitation jumped 96 percent and Hong Kong increased by 49 percent in June.

Ireland:
Second quarter arrivals totaled 86,000, up 46 percent, a significant jump from the first quarter, which increased by 24 percent.

Bahamas:
Second quarter arrivals totaled 62,000, up 13 percent. First half arrivals totaling 103,000 were up 12 percent from the first six months of 2003.

Israel:
During the first half of 2004 Israel visitation, totaling 121,000, accounted for 55 percent of all arrivals from the Middle East. Travel increased by 28 percent in the first quarter, but by a lesser amount, 9 percent, in the second quarter.

Taiwan (ROC):
In its similarity to the PRC/Hong Kong market, Taiwanese arrivals increased by 11 percent on the first quarter with a 115 percent jump in 2Q, with 80,000 arrivals. Monthly contributions were as follows: April, up 99 percent, May, up 173 percent and June, up 92 percent.

TOP PORTS January - June 2004

In addition to tracking arrivals to the country, on a monthly basis, OTTI also has data on arrivals for over 40 ports of entry by all world regions and 30 countries. A brief analysis is presented on the top 15 ports for overseas arrivals June 2004 year-to-date.

Arrivals at the top 15 ports of entry totaled 86 percent of all overseas arrivals in the during the first six months of 2004, up one percentage point from the first half of 2003 (at 85 percent). Top port overseas arrivals for the first half were up 21 percent, equivalent to the increase in all overseas arrivals. The top three ports of entry (New York – JFK, Miami and Los Angeles) accounted for 37 percent of overseas arrivals through the top ports. This was down slightly from the first half of 2003 during which the top three accounted for 38 percent.

All top fifteen ports posted increased arrivals. Agana (Guam), Newark, Sanford and New York registered the largest increases, at 69 percent, 30 percent, 30 percent and 27 percent, respectively.

New York held on as the leading port of entry for the first half. Newark jumped from seventh to fifth, ahead of San Francisco and Chicago. Boston moved up from fourteenth to twelfth, ahead of Houston. Houston dropped from twelfth to thirteenth displacing Detroit to the fourteenth spot.

To access top port activity, go to: https://travel.trade.gov/view/m-2004-I-001/port_entry04_q2.html

OUTLOOK (for Q3 and Q4)

The U.S. Department of Commerce Travel Barometer reported that in the German – U.S. market:

  • Summer bookings were predicted to be higher by 85 percent of the respondents. Bookings for third quarter 2004, at the time of the survey, were up 10 to 15 percent on average, compared to a year ago.
  • Fourth quarter travel demand was also predicted to remain strong. No respondents predicted a decrease in bookings.

    And in the U. K. – U.S. market:
  • Summer travel demand was predicted to be higher with nearly half (48%) predicting much higher visitation.
  • Nearly all respondents predicted higher arrivals in fourth quarter 2004. However, the optimism was slightly lower compared to summer travel.

The Air Transport Association reported that International traffic (enplanements) in July (ATA), increased by 15 percent over July 2003. (This should only be viewed as a loose predicator of arrival traffic for two reasons: 1. I-94 arrival data reflects only non-resident in-bound traffic to the U.S., traveling on either U.S. or foreign air carriers; 2. ATA traffic is only reported on US based carriers and is an aggregate of both resident and non-resident travel). Nevertheless, given the apparent correlation between enplanements and arrivals, it would be reasonable to expect double-digit growth in July for overseas arrivals.

Further Information:

The above analysis is a synopsis of the world regions and the top markets generating arrivals to the United States. Arrival statistics for the top countries and world regions may be accessed on-line from the monthly section of the U.S. Department of Commerce, Office of Travel and Tourism Industries (OTTI) web site at:
https://travel.trade.gov/view/m-2004-I-001/index.html

Once on this page, there are numerous links to tables that provide arrivals for the top arrival markets to the United States. Please take a look at each of the links available.

The monthly Summary of International Travel to the U.S. report has approximately 30 tables that provide data on monthly and year-to-date arrivals to the country. The report provides data on approximately 90 countries each month and over 40 ports-of-entry. Numerous breakouts are provided by world region, countries and for the port tables as well. To learn more about this program, please go to: http://tinet.ita.doc.gov/research/programs/i94/index.html

If you would like to purchase the monthly international arrival reports for 2004, please go to: http://tinet.ita.doc.gov/research/reports/i94/index.html