August U.S. Travel Agency Air Ticket Sales Increase 328% Year Over Year

2021 News Releases

August U.S. Travel Agency Air Ticket Sales Increase 328% Year Over Year

Air Travel Passenger Trips Decrease 10% Month Over Month

ARLINGTON, Va. – September 16, 2021 Airlines Reporting Corp. (ARC) today released data showing ARC-accredited travel agencies experienced a 328% year-over-year increase in air ticket sales during August 2021. The consolidated dollar value of tickets sold by agencies in August totaled $3.2 billion, up from $715 million in August 2020 and down from $4 billion in July 2021.*

Month over month, August 2021 results showed:

  • Total passenger trips fell by 10%.
  • U.S. domestic trips decreased 10%.
  • International trips decreased 10% for the second consecutive month.

“Airlines and travel agencies anticipated a drop in overall sales and passenger trips in August as new mandates and border restrictions began taking effect in July,” said Steve Solomon, vice president of global sales, marketing operations and customer experience at ARC. “Our data shows that decline beginning to level off toward the end of August. In the coming months, there will be some uncertainty and volatility as schools reopen, businesses delay return-to-office dates, and as countries introduce new travel restrictions.”

Total passenger trips settled by ARC in August 2021 increased 151% year over year, from 6 million to 15.2 million. U.S. domestic and international passenger trips increased 145% and 168% YOY, respectively. Overall, U.S. domestic passenger trips totaled 10.9 million and international trips totaled 4.3 million. The average U.S. round-trip ticket price increased to $398 in August 2021, up from $321 in August 2020.

Year over year, August 2021 EMD sales increased 249% to $6,364,223, while EMD transactions increased 265% to 129,684.**

More detailed information is available on ARC’s sales statistics page. Additional breakdown of corporate, leisure and online ticket sales can be found on the ARC COVID-19 data page.

Notes for Editors:

*Ticket Sales

  • Results are based on monthly sales data ending August 31, 2021, from 10,934 U.S. retail and corporate travel agency locations, satellite ticket printing offices and online travel agencies. Results do not include sales of tickets purchased directly from airlines.
    • The average ticket price (USD) is for a round-trip ticket settled through ARC for an itinerary that included only U.S. domestic travel.
    • Passenger trips include the total number of passengers taking a trip from one airport to another using direct or connecting flights. Newly issued trips are added, and refunded trips are deducted to provide a net view of traveling passengers.
    • U.S. domestic passenger trips include the total number settled through ARC where the itinerary is wholly within the U.S. International passenger trips include the total number settled through ARC where some or all the travel occurs to airports outside the U.S. or originates outside the U.S.
    • Total sales are equal to the total amount paid for a ticket, which includes taxes and fees.

**Electronic Miscellaneous Documents (EMD)

  • Includes fees for products and services such as upgraded seats, checked bags, an unaccompanied minor, pet-in-cabin, etc.


ARC accelerates the growth of global air travel by delivering forward-looking travel data, flexible distribution services and other innovative industry solutions. We are a leading travel intelligence company that possesses the world’s largest, most comprehensive global airline ticket dataset, including more than 15 billion passenger flights representing 490 airlines and 230 countries and territories. Our solutions and expertise strengthen economies and enrich lives by connecting stakeholders across the travel ecosystem. For more information, visit

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Randy Spoon