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Economy

U.S. Cities Are Seeing a Big Drop in Tourism From China

Travel from China to the U.S. fell for the first time in over a decade. That could mean money lost for big cities as well as smaller places near national parks.
New York City is one of the top travel destinations for Chinese tourists.
New York City is one of the top travel destinations for Chinese tourists.Lucas Jackson/Reuters

Tensions between the United States and China appear to be taking a toll on Chinese tourism to America, according to new data from the National Travel and Tourism Office.

Customs data collected by the American agency show that the U.S. received 2.9 million Chinese visitors in 2018, down 5.7 percent from the year before. It’s too early to predict the impact on individual cities in the long term, says Tori Barnes, vice president of public affairs at the U.S. Travel Association, but that trade organization has been warning that a prolonged trade war could “bleed into the travel arena.”