President Trump’s revised travel ban is set to take effect next Thursday. In the meantime, the US Travel Association says the tourism industry is already seeing evidence of what’s being called a “Trump slump” as regular travellers are not travelling to the US.
“I don’t want to spend any of my euros in this version of United States. It’s not the one I’ve known for long time,” says Damien Selosse.
Selosse could be a reason for the $2.1 trillion US tourism industry to worry. For 30 years he’s been coming to America from France, but cancelled plans to attend a conference next month in Brooklyn.
“Maybe an opportunity to visit Australia or New Zealand,” he says.
As airport protests erupted in January in response to Trump’s first travel ban, the Global Business Travellers Association reported $185 million dollars in lost bookings to the US, reports CBS News.
Emirates Airlines alone said the pace of its bookings fell 35 per cent.
In addition, New York City just lowered its 2017 travel forecast by 300,000 international visitors -- the first drop since 2008.
“We saw a really big dip and we’ve not fully recovered,” says Patrick Surry from the travel website Hopper.
Surry says airfare searches to the United States dropped in 102 of 122 countries since Trump’s inauguration.
According to Hopper, bookings to China are off nearly 46 per cent, Saudi Arabia down 35 per cent, Ireland dropped 32 per cent and Mexico down 23 per cent.
One notable exception, the travel site Hopper reports, is that travel bookings to Russia jumped 54 per cent.
“Search tends to be a leading indicator of booking,” Surry says in regards to how many of those searches turn into actual purchases, “ … Because people are typically planning several days or week before they actually purchase.”
US airlines haven’t taken a hit yet, Van Cleave reports, but ground is shaky as more international flights are being scheduled and there’s more competition from low cost carriers.