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Weekly Research Roundup

Since the beginning of the pandemic, the Colorado Tourism Office has kept its pulse on the effects of COVID-19 on our industry, using data insights to navigate a path forward. To help travel economies across the state, the office will share a condensed, Colorado-focused research summary every week. Below is this week's research roundup. 

Travel Data and Research Reports

U.S. Travel and Tourism Economics

  • Total Colorado traveler spending in March 2021 was $1.6 billion, down 20.2% from March 2020.
  • Since January 2020, Colorado has lost $9.7 billion in travel spending, down 30% y-o-y. This outperforms the US as a whole who is down 38% y-o-y.
  • Since the beginning of March, the U.S. travel economy’s losses from the COVID-19 pandemic have tallied $566 billion. 
  • Short term rental demand fully recovered to 2019 levels in March, up 1% compared to 2019.
  • The Leisure & Hospitality sector accounted for 31% of all new jobs in March 2021. 

Ski Area Visitation Trends

  • In partnership with Rove Marketing and Uber Media, U.S. Travel’s exclusive dashboard monitors daily unique mobile devices across various points of interest at sample ski destinations in the U.S.

National Parks Visitation Trends

  • In collaboration with Rove Marketing and Uber Media, U.S. Travel is offering a new and exclusive dashboard that monitors daily unique mobile devices across various points of interest at sample U.S. National Parks and National Park Sites

Destination Analysts

  • Seven-in-ten Americans are in a ready-to-travel state of mind and two-thirds say they are highly open to travel inspiration. In the last week, over 75% have actively dreamt and/or planned travel, including the nearly 18% who made a booking or reservation for an upcoming trip.
  • American travel is indeed definitively on the rise. As of this week, nearly 88% have at least tentative leisure trip plans right now and over 71% will be taking at least one trip within the next 3 months. In fact, the typical American traveler is likely to take nearly 2 leisure trips by the time August rolls around.For travel marketers to reach and capitalize on the high rates of excitement and openness to inspiration, fortunately, American travelers are showing a receptiveness to travel messaging in a variety of channels, including social, print, streaming and direct. TikTok, a rising star throughout the pandemic, is growing as a channel for travel influence, with nearly a quarter of younger travelers saying it is an ideal place to reach them.
  • Over 70% of Summer travelers plan to head out of state (and one-in-ten will travel abroad) so, while car is still the predominant transportation method, 34.2% will be getting on an airplane. Beaches remain the top destination and planned activity, although 27.3% say they will be visiting cities. Restaurants and retail stores look to be attracting tourists this Summer, as well.
  • When asked what they most want out of travel this year, Americans are largely looking to escape and relax, experience beautiful places, do new things and visit places they have been dreaming of.
  • There continues to be more good news about still-slow-but-recovering business travel. Now 56% of those employed by companies in which there is business travel say that this travel has resumed, up 8 percentage points from last month. Perhaps most importantly, the extent of the perceived lasting changes to business travel appears to be retreating.

TSA Passenger Throughput

                     2021          2020            2019     
April 29    1,526,681     154,695      2,499,461
April 28    1,184,326     119,629      2,256,442
April 27    1,077,199     110,913      2,102,068
April 26    1,369,410     119,854      2,412,770

Data will be updated every Friday. To see the full compilation of national data from US Travel click here. For more information, please contact Jackson Feld at jackson.feld@state.co.us.