College of Liberal Arts Interviews Dennis Jansen on Holiday Travel

Nov 13, 2020
Summary: Dennis Jansen was featured in a story on holiday travel on the website for the College of Liberal Arts at Texas A&M University that was published on Thursday, November 12, 2020.
As the holiday season quickly approaches, Thanksgiving and Christmas are normally peak times for the air travel industry. This year, however, a much more modest increase is expected due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“In April there was virtually no travel, but now we’re back to about 35-40 percent of where we were a year ago,” Jansen said. “We’ve made a big improvement since April but we’re nowhere near where we started from since we are still functioning and obtaining revenue at less than half that compared to 2019.”
Whereas other parts of Texas receive a boost to their economies during the summer from high employment and tourism, employment and tourism are also at their highest in the fall in College Station-Bryan. Although travel and businesses restrictions have loosened, state and local economies have still not fully recovered.
“During the fall, there is a combination of shopping and travelling for the holiday season and football season going on due to A&M being open,” Jansen said. “So even though we see a rise in employment, this year we are not going to be at the levels we were in 2019.”
The path to a full economic recovery may take up to several years. “The Congressional Budget Office has a forecast of GDP total output of the economy, and because we’ve shut down restaurants and bars and big entertainment events, the GDP has fallen a lot,” Jansen said. “When we opened back up a little bit, we had a big increase in GDP output. If you look at the Congressional Budget Office forecast, they estimate having us return to potential output, (output where you’re at full employment) in about three years.”
Read the full article here.