Notes from Here and There—2020 Should be Better: About this time of the year, in the midst of the peak summer travel season, travel suppliers and DMOs who market abroad know very well the wisdom of the old adage, “If it ain’t done yet, it ain’t gonna get done.”
Judging by random news notes in the global trade press, along with anecdotal accounts from tourism sales and marketing professionals, it’s clear that the focus is on prospects for 2020 and beyond, while data points here and there suggest that the key measures for success tell us that 2019 is going to end up being a flat year. Some notes:
—The latest issue of US Travel’s Leading Travel Index (LTI), covering activity through May told us that “International inbound expanded 1.2% (year-on-year) in May, falling closer to its six-month trend following three months of wider fluctuations. The Leading Travel Index continues to project that inbound travel growth will be slow, registering just 0.4% over the next six months.”
Leading tour operators in Germany are already taking bookings for summer 2020 holidays at the same time as trying to stimulate bookings for this summer.
An item in the German travel trade publication FVW, reported that, midst weak sales for summer 2019, the country’s top tour operator, TUI, has opened up for travel agency reservations for some destinations for summer 2020.
At the same time, No. 2 Thomas Cook has also opened up its summer 2020 program for reservations of package and hotel-only bookings. And No. 3 DER Touristik has also made many destinations offered by its tour operator brands available for bookings for Summer 2020
—For the first four months of 2019, came the news from Destination Canada, that the number of Canadians who had visited the USA drop by 5.8 percent for the same period in 2018—a drop-off of nearly 390,000.
—Meanwhile, the U.S. National Travel & Tourism Office (NTTO) recently released arrivals figures for the top overseas inbound tourism source markets which showed that visitor traffic to the United States for the first five months of the year (January-May) was mixed. While it was up year-on-year for the UK (+8.2%), Japan (+6.5%),, France (+4.1%), India (4.0%), Italy (+1.4%), Colombia (+12.5%) and Spain *.2%), it was down for China (-3.1%), Brazil (-2.1%), South Korea (-4.4%), Germany (-0.9%), Australia (1.9%) and Argentina (-23.3%).