Presidential elections clip the wings of the US travel industry
Every four years would-be voters get so consumed in political issues, they stop thinking about future plans
Ten years ago, Dan Sherman could have told you that tourism was going to take a big dip in 2020. But Sherman isn’t an epidemiologist with a crystal ball. He’s a travel industry veteran who’s been watching booking trends for long enough to know that economic downturns occur in predictable, four-year cycles. The fiscal uncertainty surrounding presidential elections, it turns out, can knock sales down by more than 30% compared with a normal year — costing some companies billions of dollars in lost revenues.
Sherman, chief marketing officer of Ski.com, gets off comparatively easy. Skiers are committed travellers who hospitality marketing professionals consider to be almost unshakeable; still, there are small signs of flagging devotion. “Normally, half of our reservations are completed before Thanksgiving,” Sherman explains.