Prepared by the American Hotel & Lodging Association 


All figures are for year-end 2011. Figures for 2012 will not be available until mid-2013.

2011 At-a-Glance Statistical Figures   2012 LODGING INDUSTRY PROFILE GRAPHIC 
51,214   properties*
4,874,837 guestrooms
$137.5 billion in sales
$61.05   revenue per available room (RevPAR)
60.0% average occupancy rate
 *Based on properties with 15 or more rooms. 


In 2011, the lodging industry generated $21.6 billion in pretax income, a 20% increase in year-over-year comparisons. Total industry revenue increased to $137.5 billion from $127.7 billion in 2010; the largest percentage change in the last ten years. 

The average room rate was $101.70 in 2011 – up from $98.06 in 2010. The average room rate was $98.07 in 2009, $107.40 in 2008, $104.32 in 2007, $97.82 in 2006, $91.04 in 2005, $86.19 in 2004, $82.68 in 2003, $82.54 in 2002 and $83.62 in 2001.

Source: STR 

In the United States, travel and tourism is among the nation’s largest services export industries, and one of America’s largest employers. In fact, it ranks as one of the top 10 largest industries in 48 states plus the District of Columbia. The tourism industry includes a number of interrelated businesses – lodging properties, airlines, restaurants, cruise lines, car rental firms, travel agents, and tour operators, among others.

Tourism’s Effects on our Economy  

  • Resident and international travelers in the United States spend an average of $2.2 billion a day, $92.8 million an hour, $1.5 million a minute, and $25,700 a second.
  • Tourism generates $813 billion in sales (excluding international passenger fares on U.S. airlines). 
  • The tourism industry pays $124 billion in federal, state, and local taxes.  


Lodging and Overall Tourism Employment  

  • The travel and tourism industry pays $194.6 billion in travel-related wages and salaries and employs 1.8 million hotel property workers.
  • Tourism directly supports more than 7.5 million travel and tourism jobs.   

In the 2011-2012 fiscal year, U.S. states planned to spend a projected $674.6 million on development and promotion in the travel and tourism industry, an increase of nearly 7.0% from the 2010-2011 fiscal year. Out of the 47 reporting states, 24 showed an increase in their budgets between FY 2010-11 and FY 2011-12, five states remained flat while 17 decreased. One state reported a non-zero budget for FY 2011-12, following zero funding in the past fiscal year. Public-sector funds continue to be the primary funding source for state tourism offices and the sole source for 26 of 47 states. Notably, Connecticut increased their budget by 1,193% to $15.8 million. Hawaii continues to rank first with the highest tourism budget of $74.9 million. California and Illinois rank among the top three tourism spenders; $61.3 million and $54.8 million respectively. Allocation of marketing dollars for domestic marketing among the reporting states increased by 6.8%, from a total of $277.4 million to $296.3 million, while the total for international marketing was up 6.3%, from $45.3 million to $48.2 million.  

Sources: U.S. Travel Association, Bureau of Labor Statistics 


By Location  Property*  Rooms+ 
Urban 4,853 760,709
Suburban 17,593 1,750,855
Airport 2,216 305,429
Interstate 7,379 500,623
Resort 3,840 601,508
Small Metro/Town 16,333  955,713
By Rate     
Under $30 410 41,514
$30-$44.99 4,727 339,579
$45-$59.99 14,637 874,545
$60-$85 15,300 1,254,804
Over $85 17,140             2,364,395
By Size     
Under 75 rooms 28,977 1,238,936
75-149 rooms 17,147 1,801,069
150-299 rooms 4,410 882,000
300-500 rooms 1,143 425,327
Over 500 rooms 537 527,505

* Based on a total of 51,214 properties.
† Based on a total of 4,874,837 guestrooms.
Source: STR


40% traveled for business
60% traveled for leisure


The typical “business room night” stay is by a male (67%), age 35–54 (51%), employed in a professional or managerial position (50%), earning an average yearly household income of $116,388. Typically, these guests travel alone (68%), make reservations (94%), and pay $129 per room night.

The typical “leisure room night stay” is by two adults (50%), ages 35–54 (40%), and 55+ (35%), earning an average yearly household income of $89,736. The typical leisure traveler also travels by auto (81%), makes reservations (91%), and pays $109 per room night.

40% of all business travelers spend one night at a hotel, 22% spend two nights, and 38% spend three or more nights.

Of leisure travelers staying in a hotel, 47% spend one night, 27% spend two nights, and 26% spend three or more nights.

 Source: D.K. Shifflet & Associates, Ltd. 


  • The United States receives a larger share of world international tourism receipts than any other country in the world. In 2011, spending estimates on travel increased 14% to $153 billion, including $116 billion spent at destinations in the U.S. and another $37 billion on passenger fares on U.S. carriers. The U.S. share of 2011 world tourism receipts was at the top (11.3%), nearly double that of second-ranked Spain (5.8%).
  • In 2011, international* travelers to the United States increased 5% over 2010 to a record 62.3 million. Overseas** arrivals increased 6% to a record 27.8 million. Canadian arrivals also increased by 7% to a record 21.3 million. Mexican arrivals was flat at 13.5 million.

  • The top 10 countries in terms of U.S. arrivals for 2011 were Canada (21.3 million), Mexico (13.5 million), United Kingdom (3.8 million), Japan (3.2 million), Germany (1.8 million), Brazil (1.5 million), France (1.5 million), South Korea (1.1 million), People’s Republic of China (1.1 million) and Australia (1.0 million). These 10 countries accounted for 80% of U.S. visitors.
  • Individual country performances were mostly positive. Only two of the top 10 countries had a visitor decrease in 2011 (United Kingdom and Japan), and six reached a record visitation level (Canada, Brazil, France, South Korea, People’s Republic of China, and Australia). The People’s Republic of China leap-frogged over Italy and Australia to land at the number eight spot for 2011 and to push Italy out of the top ten origin country list.
  • The impact of international travelers on the hotel industry is considerable; international visitors accounted for 21% of all lodging sales.*** In 2011, 22.1 million overseas travelers and another 10.6 million Canadians (2011 estimated from 2010 data) stayed in a hotel/motel during their U.S. visit. The average length of stay for overseas hotel visitors was 8.8 nights; the average party size was 1.7 travelers. The main purposes of trips for overseas travelers who stayed in hotels and motels were leisure/recreation/ holiday (62%), and business/convention (25%). These mobile travelers visited 1.7 states while in the country and traveled by taxis and limousines (47%), rented cars (34%), and air (30%) within the country.
  • The outlook for 2012 calls for an increase of 5% in foreign visitors due to favorable currency exchange rates for most major currencies and from continued growth from Canada, Mexico and key developing countries. This forecast does not include potential positive impacts from BrandUSA marketing efforts. Through April 2012 arrivals are up 10% overall, including up10% from overseas markets, up 7% from Canada, and up 7% from Mexico.
  • This robust growth from the international travel market—combined with much slower traveler volume growth expected from the U.S. domestic travel market—means the importance of international travel on the lodging industry should continue to grow over the foreseeable future—perhaps reaching 25% of lodging sales by 2016 depending on possible changes in hotel use incidence and/or hotel stay length among international and domestic travelers.  

*International includes Canada, Mexico, and overseas.
**Overseas excludes Canada and Mexico.
***Bureau of Economic Analysis. Most recent data available.

Sources: U.S. Department of Commerce, International Trade Administration, Office of Travel & Tourism Industries; U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis, Statistics Canada; Banco de Mexico.