Travel Agencies & Services Industry Profile

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Excerpt from Travel Agencies & Services Industry Profile

Companies in this industry arrange travel and traveler accommodations and include travel agents, tour operators, and other travel services like time-share exchanges, visitors' bureaus, and ticket offices. Major companies include American Express Travel, Booking Holdings, CWT, Expedia Group, and Sabre (all based in the US), as well as BCD Travel (the Netherlands), China International Travel Service (China), HIS Co Ltd (Japan), and TUI Group (Germany).

Annual revenue from worldwide tourism, which includes travel agency services, reached about $1.09 trillion in 2020 and is expected to reach $1.3 trillion by 2021. According to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the global economy could lose more than $4 trillion due to the effects of COVID-19 on tourism.

The US travel services industry includes about 21,000 establishments (single-location companies and units of multi-location companies) with combined annual revenue of about $55 billion.


Demand is driven by business and leisure travel, which depends on the economy. The profitability of individual companies depends on marketing. Large companies have an advantage in being able to provide a wider range of services, especially to corporate customers, and to afford sophisticated websites. Small companies can compete effectively by providing service to a few large customers, specializing in a service niche, or serving a local market. The US industry is concenrated: the 50 largest companies account for about 55% of revenue.

Two major factors have shaped the industry in ...

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