The summer travel season is approaching, and in a typical year, many states would expect the arrival of tourists from all across Europe, from the United Kingdom to Sweden. Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, residents of the UK, Ireland, and European Schengen area have been barred entry into the country. States will need to account for billions of dollars in economic losses as a result.
It's worth noting that the European travel ban is not specifically correlated with the COVID-19 incidence rate. The U.S. is banning 31 European countries that have a low or extremely low incidence rate. However, it allows entry from at least 27 countries with equal or higher incidence rates than the highest incidence rate registered in one of the 31 European countries. In addition, some countries whose residents are allowed to enter the U.S. are in the midst of a new wave of the pandemic, such as Argentina and the U.A.E.
While the U.S. will be hurt economically by the lack of European tourists, not all states will be impacted equally. In order to determine the states hurting the most from the European travel ban, WalletHub calculated the potential monetary losses based on the number of inbound tourists to each state alongside their total spending, and compared the result to each state’s gross domestic product (GDP).
States Hurting the Most from the European Travel Ban
|Overall Rank||State||Impact Score||% of GDP|
|2||District of Columbia||66.99||6.40%|
Note: Rank of 1 reflects the highest economic impact of travel bans on the U.S. state.
The following states are not ranked because of their marginal impact from the European countries: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Delaware, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia and Wyoming. However, they may be impacted by the travel ban on other countries including China, India and South Africa.
European Countries vs. 27 Allowed Countries vs. Allowed Country with Highest COVID Rate (Seychelles)
Ask the Experts
To get more insight into the effectiveness of travel bansand the reasons for instituting them, WalletHub turned to a panel of experts. You can click on the photos of the experts below to read their bios and see their responses to the following key questions:
- Do travel bans at a country level make sense? Why or why not?
- Why are the country travel bans not based on current COVID-19 rates?
- Which would be more effective: travel bans or more robust COVID-19 testing?
Ask the Experts
In order to assess the economic impact of travel bans on each U.S. state, WalletHub calculated the potential monetary losses based on the number of inbound tourists to each state alongside their total spending, and compared the result to each state’s gross domestic product (GDP).
For our calculations, we have taken into account European countries whose residents were restricted entry into to the United States amid the COVID-19 pandemic: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Ireland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. Due to data limitations, not all European countries were included in our analysis.
The 27 countries to which we compared the European countries in our graphic are the countries with the highest COVID-19 incidence rates whose residents are allowed entry into the United States. Those countries are: Seychelles, Uruguay, Bahrain, Maldives, Argentina, Colombia, Suriname, Mongolia, Paraguay, Chile, Kuwait, Namibia, Costa Rica, Oman, Bolivia, Trinidad and Tobago, U.A.E., Botswana, Georgia, Malaysia, Panama, Tunisia, Guyana, Cape Verde, Sri Lanka, Iraq and Cuba.
Sources: Data used to create this ranking were collected from the U.S. Department of Commerce, the Bureau of Economic Analysis and The New York Times.