TIA Report Says Robust Economy Will Spur Travel

WASHINGTON -- A first-of-its-kind forecast released by the Travel Industry Association found that travel by U.S. residents and international visitors will increase steadily through 2000, spurred by a robust economy.

Travel by U.S. residents will increase 3.2% this year, accounting for 1.15 billion trips, but will rise at a slower rate over the next three years, the forecast said. Travel to the U.S. will grow from 46.2 million travelers this year to 51.8 million by 2000.

Other highlights include:

* Travel-related spending for U.S. residents will increase 7.7% to $412.9 billion this year and reach $499 billion by 2000.

* Business travel will lead the growth in domestic travel, increasing by 4.8% this year, 3.6% in 1998, 3.4% in 1999 and 3.5% in 2000.

* The south Atlantic, Pacific and Mountain regions of the U.S. will see the biggest increases in travel in the future.

The data were based on a new forecast model developed by the TIA in cooperation with DRI/McGraw-Hill.

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