Travel in 2022 Will Be Even Busier Than Pre-pandemic Times, According to New Report

Next year is predicted to be even more popular for trips than before the pandemic, a new report by the World Travel & Tourism Council shows.

Travelers are ready to get out and explore — and 2022 could be even more popular for trips than before the pandemic, according to a new report the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) shared with Travel + Leisure.

When it comes to getaways, domestic travel growth has "significantly" outpaced global tourism as a whole and is expected to rise even more in 2022.

This year, the United States travel sector is anticipating a 35.6% bump, compared to 2020. And next year, the U.S. travel sector is expected to grow by another 28.4%, according to the report, which was produced with Oxford Economics.

"Our research shows that while the global travel [and] tourism sector is slowly beginning to recover, the U.S. is recovering faster than many other regions," Julia Simpson, WTTC president and CEO, said in a statement shared with T+L, adding because of the "predicted rise in international and domestic spend this year and next, both jobs and GDP are on the rise."

In total, travel is anticipated to generate nearly $2 trillion of the U.S. economy in 2022. And all that money generates jobs: travel sector employment is expected to rise by 26.2% in 2021, or an increase of about 2.9 million jobs.

Woman pushes cart of suitcases in a crowded airport while wearing a mask

While domestic trips took off in 2020 and 2021, international travel has started to ramp up again. On Nov. 8, the U.S. reopened its borders to vaccinated travelers from around the globe and several countries in Europe, Asia, and beyond have started welcoming American tourists.

That will likely result in a nearly 228% growth in international spending by travelers in the U.S. in 2022, compared to this year, according to the World Travel & Tourism Council.

"The U.S. opening its borders and easing restrictions to major source markets such as the UK and the EU will provide a massive boost to economies on both sides of the Atlantic," Simpson said. "However, the long-term recovery of the sector in the U.S and around the world depends on the U.S. border remaining open to international visitors and making travel easier."

Alison Fox is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure. When she's not in New York City, she likes to spend her time at the beach or exploring new destinations and hopes to visit every country in the world. Follow her adventures on Instagram.

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