Canadian Travel Press
Issue Date: Sep 04, 2017

What slump?

Canada–USA traffic continues to rise

Mike Dunbar

So much for the Trump Slump!
The anticipated transborder visitor fall-off, fueled by opposition to the new president, has failed to materialize. To the contrary, the Canada–USA traffic count has risen for six of the first eight months since Donald Trump was elected last November.
And the latest statistics show conclusively that the migration southwards is being led by air travel demand, which soared an astonishing, close on 20% in June compared with the same month last year.
The result was so surprising that US commerce department economist Mark Brown was driven to report, “Volume growth was led by the air transport segment, which was up 17.8% (yes, confirmed that’s up seventeen point eight per cent).
But that’s not all.
He added, “For perspective, outbound from Canada to the rest of the world was up 18.3% (yes, confirmed that’s up eighteen point three per cent).”
The new crop of numbers show that the one-night minimum stay transborder drive segment was off 1.5% compared with June 2016 and seaborne arrivals were down 5.5% to about 50,000 overnighters.
On a year-to-date basis, overall visitation to the United States involving at least one overnight was up 4.8% through June. The drive segment count was some 4.9 million, but air travel, with a much longer duration average, was not far behind at 4.5 million.
The Inbound traffic flow from the US maintained its three-year positive trend with a healthy 7.4% visitation boost in June alone. The air segment was up 8.7%, while land arrivals rose 6.4% over the respective June 2016 totals.
For the first half of 2017, northbound air travel was up 6.7%, but drive arrival numbers stagnated somewhat; rising only 1.2% over the same period last year, having posted three months of declines – the first since December 2014.