It took about a month longer than it usually does for the Japan Association of Travel Agents (JATA) to process the results of its quarterly of Survey of Travel Market Trends for the travel trade in the country. But the wait might have been worth it for U.S. travel suppliers as the country’s travel agents and tour operators indicated that they are confident that travel to the United States will be better in the current quarter (July through September) and the final quarter (October through December) of 2018 compared to a year ago. In fact, the increase in survey’s Diffusion Index, or DI (See Note on Methodology below) was more than 25 percent for the final quarter.
This marks a significant increase in the JATA survey regarding outbound travel to the U.S., a measure which has been flat to negative for some three years.
In its own language, the JATA survey analysis said, “The overseas travel DI has improved steadily since the level of two years ago. The DI which was at standstill for two consecutive quarters has grown as Europe gained 12 points, South Korea 11 points, the USA & Canada 8 points, and China 6 points.” In reviewing specific market segments, JATA anticipates a boost in honeymoon travel, female officer worker travel and education travel through the end of 2018.
Before You Review the Tables: It is important to understand the methodology behind the compilation and preparation of the Survey of Travel Market Trends. JATA asks all member companies to register as survey monitors. It conducts the quarterly Survey of Travel Market Trends that involves more than 600 registered companies and publishes the results. The Survey of Travel Market Trends is designed to grasp trends in the travel market based on responses to questions on current conditions and those anticipated over the next three months. The survey asks participating companies to rate their sales results for each destination and customer segment by choosing from three categories: “good,” “average,” and “poor.” For items outside their business scope, respondents select “do not handle.” Each share of “good,” “average,” and “poor” is then divided respectively by the denominator, which is equal to the total number of responses minus the “do not handle” (including “no reply”) responses. Finally, each share is processed into a Diffusion Index (DI) by subtracting the percentage of “poor” from the percentage of “good.” The highest possible index figure is +100, and the lowest is -100.
NOTE: The Internet survey that produced the above results was conducted from May 2, 2018 to June 8, 2018. The number of registered companies that received the survey was 632. The number of responding companies was 299, for a response rate of 47.3 percent.