For those of us not directly involved in the scrappy give-and-take of destination marketing for U.S. states and territories, the significance of a shift of 2.7 percent in total arrivals from overseas source markets for inbound travel and tourism from one year to the next might not be worth even a mild sneeze. But for those who are in the midst of the fight, it means things like the state of New York lost that percentage of visits from these source markets, as the movement of traffic meant the loss of 286,000 visitors 2019 vs. 2018—just about as many overseas visitors as the state of Minnesota received for the whole year.
Because of facts such as these, the state officials who are seeking to protect or increase their appropriations—along with the consultants and private sector marketers who serve state clients—are involved in a pitched battle right now. The reason is that July 1st marks the beginning of the new Fiscal Year for most states. Competition for limited state funding is particularly fierce this year, as program cuts are then norm for state budgets reeling from the impact of the coronavirus-driven global pandemic and its impact on state economies.
Recently posted by the U.S. National Travel and Tourism Office (NTTO), the key figures for overseas visitors to U.S. States reveal the statistical ticks and turbulence in the key numbers for U.S. states and territories. Not all states are included, as NTTO included only those states in which the survey produced at least 100 respondents. (Remember, these data are generated by a survey, not a total count or census.)