February US Travel Agency Air Ticket Sales Continue Upward Trend

Increase in U.S. Domestic Passenger Trips Fuel Strong Month-Over-Month Sales

ARLINGTON, Va.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Airlines Reporting Corp. (ARC) today released data showing net sales from ARC-accredited travel agencies totaling $1.5 billion in February 2021, up 20% compared to January 2021.* The February total is a 79% drop year over year compared to February 2020, when net sales totaled $7.2 billion.

Month over month, February 2021 results showed:

  • Total passenger trips increased 16%;
  • U.S. domestic trips up 19%; and
  • International trips up 9%.

“This is the second month of 20% or greater growth in sales, which is an encouraging sign for air travel, particularly in the U.S.” said Chuck Thackston, ARC’s managing director of data science and research. “The easing of travel restrictions as vaccine availability increases should further fuel the recovery in the coming months.”

Total passenger trips settled by ARC in February 2021 were down 63% year over year, from 24,859,370 to 9,289,645. U.S. domestic trips were down 59% to 6.6 million, and international trips down 70% to 2.7 million YOY. The average U.S. round-trip ticket price decreased from $488 in February 2020 to $346 in February 2021.

Year over year, EMD sales for February 2021 decreased 61% to $3,082,682, while EMD transactions were down 53% to 64,331.

More detailed information is available on ARC’s website.

About ARC:

As a leader in air travel intelligence and omnichannel retailing, ARC provides platforms, tools and insights that help the global travel community connect, grow and thrive. ARC enables the diverse retailing strategies of its customers by providing innovative technology, flexible settlement solutions and access to the world’s most comprehensive air transaction dataset. In 2019, ARC managed more than $97.4 billion in transactions between airlines and travel agencies, representing more than 302 million passenger trips. For more information, please visit arccorp.com.

Notes for Editors:

*Ticket Sales

  • Results are based on monthly sales data ending February 28, 2021, from 11,048 U.S. retail and corporate travel agency locations, satellite ticket printing offices and online travel agencies. Results do not include sales of tickets purchased directly from airlines.
  • Average ticket price (in USD) for a round-trip ticket settled through ARC for an itinerary that included only U.S. domestic travel.
  • Passenger trips include the total number of passengers taking a trip from one airport to another using either direct or connecting flights. Newly issued trips are added, and refunded trips are deducted to provide a net view of traveling passengers.
  • U.S. Domestic passenger trips include the total number settled through ARC where the itinerary is wholly within the U.S. International passenger trips include the total number settled through ARC where some or all of the travel occurs to airports outside the U.S. or originates outside the U.S.
  • Total sales are equal to the total amount paid for a ticket, which includes taxes and fees.

**Electronic Miscellaneous Documents (EMD)

  • Includes fees for products and services such as upgraded seats, checked luggage, an unaccompanied minor, pet-in-cabin, etc.

© Airlines Reporting Corporation (ARC). All rights reserved.


Randy Spoon