Visa Service Provides U.S. Tourism Industry with Unique Insights into Spending by International Visitors

June 10, 2009 at 8:01 AM EDT
VisaVue(R) Travel Helps U.S. Tourism Industry Subscribers Compete for International Visitor Spending in a Tougher Economic Climate

SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jun. 10, 2009-- Visa Inc. (NYSE:V) today announced that it is introducing a new service that will provide government agencies, hotels, airlines and other organizations within the U.S. tourism industry, unique insights into spending by international visitors to the U.S. VisaVue® Travel will enable subscribers to tailor their marketing and promotional strategies and budgets based on up-to-date information about international spending on Visa payment card transactions.

“The global economy is placing considerable pressure on travel and tourism industry merchants. By converting Visa transaction data into actionable information, we can provide timely insights to businesses that rely on tourism revenues as we work to help them grow their businesses,” said Bill Sheedy, President – North America, Visa Inc.

The scale of Visa’s network of cardholders, merchants and financial institutions, as well as the sophistication of VisaNet, the company’s global processing network, combine to give VisaVue Travel its unique value. Visa is the world’s largest retail electronic payments network, connecting more than 1.7 billion cards, 30 million acceptance locations, 1.4 million ATMs and 16,400 financial institutions in more than 170 countries around the world. The Visa system securely processes more than 55 billion Visa transactions annually, transferring trillions of dollars and terabytes of business critical information. Visa’s unique and comprehensive view of tourism commerce, can yield valuable insights for enterprises and government authorities focused on driving tourism sales and supporting the local, state and national economies.

Sheedy said, “At the heart of VisaVue® Travel is VisaNet, the company’s centralized processing system, which, besides facilitating commerce with speed, accuracy and efficiency, enables us to harness the rich data that flows through our network to offer information-based products and services beyond payment. VisaVue® Travel illustrates the role Visa plays in supporting the tourism industry – better enabling them to meet the rapidly changing needs of the customers they serve.”

VisaVue® Travel reports provide a broad view of international tourism spending, while protecting the integrity and privacy of cardholder data. VisaVue® Travel data includes aggregate international cardholder spending on Visa debit, credit, commercial and prepaid cards, and reports feature:

  • Comprehensive and distinct reports which isolate leisure and business traveler spending.
  • Data on the number of Visa cardholders visiting a region or state, as well as total sales and average purchase size.
  • Analysis of tourist spending based on country of origin.
  • A detailed view of tourist spending across thousands of merchant categories – from lodging and airlines to restaurants and entertainment.

In 2008, VisaVue® Travel data was made available in a pilot program to select states and convention visitors bureaus in the U.S.

AnnDee Johnson, Director of Research & Strategic Planning, Arizona Office of Tourism said, “As an example of the usefulness of the VisaVue® Travel data, we are already using the information to assist Arizona’s international airport and country-specific carriers with program planning input. VisaVue Travel is also giving us far more insight into what travelers do when they arrive, further helping to define components of promotional packages.”

Richard Goldman, Senior Vice President of Amelia Island Plantation and VISIT FLORIDA Board Chairman added, “International visitors to Florida continue to comprise a significant share of tourist spending, which is vital to Florida's economic engine. VisaVue has equipped us with a deep understanding of the composition of these tourists and the nature of their spending patterns during visits. As a result, we’re able to target our marketing more effectively in order to position the Sunshine State as a leading destination, attract new visitors and support commerce at the local level.”

In 2008, VisaVue® data provided a framework for snapshots of tourist spending for Visa’s U.S. International Tourism Outlook. Key findings included:

  • In 2008, U.S. Visa cardholders spending more than $42.4 billion on their Visa payment cards in the top 225 destination countries, while international visitors spent more than $52 billion on their Visa payment cards in the U.S., representing growth over 2007 spending.
  • The greatest share of Americans’ spending while abroad is in Canada, Mexico and the United Kingdom, with U.S. Visa cardholders spending a combined $13.4 billion in those countries in 2008.
  • General retail continues to be the biggest expenditure for travelers, representing 36 percent of Visa transactions by Americans in 2008, totaling more than $15.8 billion.

For more information on VisaVue®Travel and Visa's initiatives focused on the tourism industry, please contact the VisaVue Product Office at

About Visa Inc.

Visa operates the world's largest retail electronic payments network providing processing services and payment product platforms. This includes consumer credit, debit, prepaid and commercial payments, which are offered under the Visa, Visa Electron, Interlink and PLUS brands. Visa enjoys unsurpassed acceptance around the world and Visa/PLUS is one of the world's largest global ATM networks, offering cash access in local currency in more than 170 countries. For more information, visit



Source: Visa Inc.

Paul Wilke, 415-932-2248
Emily Collins, 415-318-4106