Terrorism, Vegas shooting
Since 2001, travelers have become more inured to terrorism. Destinations bounce back quickly after attacks, and the general sentiment is that life must go on.
ISIS-inspired attacks continued this year, including a series of vehicle attacks in major tourist hubs like New York, London and Barcelona.
But travelers seemed to be most shaken, at least temporarily, by the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history, which happened Oct. 1 on the Las Vegas Strip. It was made all the more frightening by the fact that, to date, law enforcement authorities have found no motive for the killings.
A shooter in the Mandalay Bay Resort fired down on concertgoers attending the Route 91 Harvest festival below, killing 58 people. The incident set off questions about security in one of the world's most visited cities.
In the wake of the shooting, Las Vegas' visitor count for October fell 4.2% from a year earlier, to 3.6 million; overall hotel occupancy declined 2.7 points, to 90%; and occupancy on the Strip fell 2.4 points, to 91.3%.
Hotels began stepping up promotions to lure guests, with discounts at some resorts as high as 25%. On Cyber Monday, rates at several hotels were less than their daily resort fees.
Maybe it was because it was Vegas, synonymous with fun and a place where safety had never been much of an issue, perhaps owing to the famously robust security in the casinos and surveillance cameras that monitor virtually every inch of public space. Maybe because unlike the Orlando nightclub shooting, tourists were the intended target.
Whatever the reason, Vegas officials right now are working to find the right balance between security and letting Vegas be Vegas.