ARC: February U.S. Agency Sales Reach Covid-Era Peak

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Airlines Reporting Corp.-accredited U.S. travel agency air ticket sales in February totaled $5.4 billion, the highest monthly level since February 2020, according to ARC. That figure represents a 253 percent year-over-year increase. The previous pandemic high for sales had been $4.4 billion in November 2021.

On a month-over-month basis, sales increased 48 percent, total passenger trips increased 21 percent, U.S. domestic trips were up 17 percent and international trips were up 28 percent, according to ARC.

“Leisure demand nearing pre-pandemic levels and accelerated corporate travel bookings fueled another strong month of sales,” ARC VP of global sales, marketing, operations and customer experience Steve Solomon said in a statement. “With the U.S. domestic travel market steadily rising, we are monitoring the war in Europe and its impact on the strong international travel growth to start the year.”

The number of corporate tickets sold in February 2022 was 60 percent below February 2019 levels, based on a 52-week rolling average, according to ARC. That figure was basically unchanged from January’s 59.2 percent decline from corporate tickets sold in January 2019. 

The average U.S. round-trip ticket price in February 2022 was $464, a 34 percent year-over-year increase from $346 in February 2021, yet a 5 percent decrease from the pre-pandemic February monthly average of $488. The average U.S. round-trip ticket price in January 2022 was $409.

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