February 21, 2024

U.S. Travel Agents: Proving to Be Resilient and Thriving

When Phocuswright began tracking the travel agency distribution landscape in 2006, the rise of online travel agencies was forcing travel advisors to prove their value - or risk extinction. As the online travel market has continued to evolve, changing business models and pandemic-era disruption have challenged agencies and advisors. Throughout, travel agencies have proven resilient, and the market is thriving. According to Phocuswright’s travel research report U.S. Travel Agency Landscape 2023, today's travel advisors have evolved to adopt new technologies and specializations to meet the needs of travel agency clients via strong relationships, service and expertise.

Travel Agency Gross Bookings

As leisure travel demand exploded in 2022 and 2023, travel agencies achieved unprecedented growth. After plunging 74% in 2020, the recovery that started in 2021 accelerated as travel agency gross bookings jumped 120% in 2022 (see figure below). Following a projected 26% growth in 2023, the travel agency market will exceed its 2019 value in 2024. At that time, market growth will normalize to single digits, and gross bookings will reach $141.3 billion in 2026.

Travel Agency YoY Growth

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