Travel News Report
May. 15, 2013

Pitts: Budget leaders close on school and water funding
The Texas Tribune
The Texas House and Senate are moving closer to a budget agreement that would include $3.2 billion extra for public education and $2 billion for water funding, House Appropriations Chairman Jim Pitts said.More

Comptroller's weekly economic outlook
The Texas Economy
Job growth, sales tax collections and building permits all signal that the Texas economy continues to outpace the national economy. Texas total nonfarm employment decreased by 4,100 jobs during March 2013. Between March 2012 and March 2013, Texas total nonfarm employment increased by 3.1 percent.More

For major US carriers, 1st quarter brings revenue growth
Travel Weekly
Southwest's higher fares and benefits from its merger with AirTran helped it increase its revenue by 2.3 percent year over year. However, its profits declined 40 percent from Q1 2012 because of lower gains from fuel hedging and other special items. Its net income was $59 million, down from $98 million a year ago. American Airlines, still emerging from Chapter 11 reorganization, reported net income of $8 million, excluding reorganization and special items, results "which surprised everyone," said Robert Herbst, an airline consultant and principal of AirlineFinancials.com.More

International visitors spent $14.4 billion in the United States in March 2013
Department of Commerce
U.S. Deputy Secretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank highlighted new data that shows spending by international visitors to the United States in March 2013 totaled more than $14.4 billion, an increase of nearly 3 percent when compared to last year. International visitors spent $43 billion on travel to, and tourism-related activities within, the United States during the first quarter of 2013. The data release coincides with National Travel and Tourism Week, celebrated each year to recognize the positive impact the industry has on our economy.More

Why customer reviews trump social media marketing
Inc.
More and more businesses are pouring time and money into tweeting and posting on Facebook. But there's a better way.More

Is a vacation in your future?
El Paso Inc.
According to a survey by the Texas Credit Union League, 64.4 percent of those polled say they plan to take a summer vacation this year. So does this mean vacations are making a comeback for the average American family? Statistics suggest so. More