The CEO of American Express has a very strong opinion about where we are right now in regards to travel and dining spending. With access to the spending data of tens of millions of customers, he’s got more than an opinion, he’s got proof and he likes what he’s seeing.
In fact, according to Squeri, COVID is in the rearview mirror and Americans are gonna travel likes it’s 2019.
“When we look at our travel numbers, our travel bookings in May were 95% of what they were in May of 2019. We also believe that by the end of the year in the U.S. we will have a full consumer recovery from a travel perspective, and overall by the end of the year I think globally we’ll probably be about 80% of what we were in 2019,” he told CNBC.
The reports from airports back him up. TSA said there were 2.03 million people screened at airports Friday, that’s the first time in 15 months over 2 million people got to hear the sometimes obnoxious instructions from the boys and girls in blue about not bringing electronics, batteries, liquids or nuclear waste through security checkpoints.
Americans are dusting off their AMEX cards at restaurants too. The CEO said dining expenses in May of 2020 was at 85% of May 2019.
He was downright giddy in his chat with Jim Kramer, practically spending his year-end bonus already. “When you look at the U.S. economy right now, I think it’s really starting to come back. Credit numbers are not like anybody thought they were going to be.”