Last updated: 08:00 PM ET, Tue April 05 2016

Travel Growth Remains Strong Despite Gloomy Business Travel Outlook

Business Travel | Gabe Zaldivar | April 05, 2016

Travel Growth Remains Strong Despite Gloomy Business Travel Outlook

Photo courtesy of Thinkstock

According to a recent report, domestic leisure travel is in need of a little gratitude as it continues to sustain the industry despite some rather troubling indications from the realm of business travel.

That’s the latest from The U.S. Travel Association, which unveiled some of its findings on what is a rather turbulent time for an industry that might otherwise rely on corporate travel.

For the moment, take joy in the fact that millions will pack their respective bags with swimming trunks and sun block and head out for a family vacation.

As best as the numbers illustrate, the overall outlook for travel is relatively strong.

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The USTA points to the business Current Travel Index (CTI) indicator, which essentially spotlights potential growth with a score above 50.

However, that doesn’t seem to be the case at the start of what will be an intriguing year for any market reliant on corporate travel.

The report states: “Domestic business travel declined again in February, as businesses struggle to recover confidence amid volatility in international markets. The business Current Travel Index (CTI) for the month was 48.7—a number below 50 indicates decline—falling even below the 6-month average of 49.3.”

There is optimism, however, in the form of the overall CTI, taking into account the domestic leisure market as well as slightly higher business segment considered over six months (49.7).

The following graph illustrates that general CTI that, while peppered with tumult, does seem to suggest growth.



Image courtesy USTA

This is hardly cause for concern or the looming sign of gloom on the horizon – at least that’s the good word from David Huether.

And Huether is rather close to the preceding numbers, serving as U.S. Travel Association’s Senior Vice President for Research.

The VP opined, “Even though domestic business travel declined and flagging advance airline bookings from abroad brought the LTI down slightly, these number should be measured against the healthy growth seen in previous months.”

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While global concerns and an overall decline from business travelers making vital bookings are indeed shaping the market, there is still a strong leisure side of the coin that continues to push growth and potential for a concerned industry.

Huether continues, “Domestic leisure travel is likely to buoy summer travel expenditures, and keep overall travel growth in positive territory for the next six months.”

So the overall snapshot is a positive one, unless you are the horrible curious sort who likes to dig a little deeper.

What you find is a business travel market that continues to be affected by International uncertainty.


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