It May Be Years Before Travel Returns to Pre-Pandemic Levels

November 23, 2020

With multiple viable vaccines on the horizon, many are hopeful that consumers will be eager to resume regular activity, especially for the hardest-hit parts of the economy like travel and hospitality. However, even if tourists resume regular activity, an important part of the travel industry may take much longer to return, if it ever does.

The United States Travel Association (USTA) estimates that travel spending will decline by more than $500 billion this year, and may not fully recover until 2024. The primary cause of this prolonged recovery, according to the USTA, is the decline in business travel. With teleconferencing and working remotely becoming the new normal, industry experts warn that business travel will never return to its previous level. The USTA claims that the travel industry has lost 3.5 million jobs this year, nearly 40% of the industry’s total workforce, and could lose another 1 million jobs if additional relief is not passed soon.

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