It appears that president Trump is having more of an effect on travel trends than he bargained for. Since coming into power, the Trump administration has adamantly attacked travel rights and The U.S.’s relationship with Mexico. Despite uncertainty and downright negativity in the U.S. media, it seems that Mexico tourism is coming out on top.
The Travel Industry Opinion on Mexico Tourism 2017
2016 was a fantastic year for Mexico tourism and the Mexico Tourism Board implemented a strategy to build on this success in 2017. However the travel industry expressed concerns following Trump’s inauguration. Arnold Donald, CEO of Carnival Corp. spoke of President Trump and his views on Mexico during the New York Times Travel Show in January 2017. He said ,”those people, a lot of them just trust him blindly, and if he makes it look like Mexico is the enemy, people will stop travelling to the enemy.” He goes on to comment that “that would hurt us (the travel industry) badly.”
Moreover, Anáhuac University and the National Business Tourism Council have also predicted that travel to Mexico will decrease following the presidential election with a 7% growth rate per year. To an extent this theory has been verified by recent numbers. Mexico tourism reached a record high in December 2016, yet this wasn’t sustained into January 2017. So far, So doom and gloom.
Trump Effect: Mexico Tourism on the Rise?
Despite bad press, worse political relations and a general pessimism surrounding Mexico tourism, the travel industry has seen some surprising effects. The plunge of the peso against the dollar has, if anything, given U.S. citizens an incentive to visit. It has essentially created a sale on Mexico. Moreover, Trump’s harsh policies on travel have redirected possible U.S. tourism to other destinations such as Mexico. Brits in particular have displayed an increased interest in Mexico tourism. TripAdvisor sited a leap in Brits looking to book Mexican vacations just hours after the new U.S. president’s election. Where bookings are concerned, travel agents report stable sales following the success of 2016. Some even reported an increase. Travel Market Report recently conducted a survey among 447 travel agents. It shows that sales to Mexican destinations are going strong. Some saw a slight decrease while other saw an increase of up to 20%.
Travel Market Report asked agents which destinations are the most popular. the Riviera Maya is a clear winner with 84%, Cancun came in second with 68%.
The conclusion? Whether or not Mexico tourism achieves the same level of success as 2016 remains to be seen. However the tourism industry looks stable, with a good chance that it will continue to increase well into 2017. The Mexico tourism industry is currently outpacing economic growth and with big investment in key areas such as the Riviera Maya, this growth looks set to continue.