TD 10-1: International Travel by Mode of Transportation (Thousands of visitors)


Table 10-1 is based on data collected through Statistics Canada’s Frontier Count program. These data provide information on the number of travelers by selected categories and by type of transportation. All ports of entry across Canada participate in determining the number of travelers by selected categories, by type of transportation, as well as the number of cars, trucks, motorcycles and bicycles in the case of highway and ferry points. These surveys are conducted on a census basis.

In Table 10-1, Canadian data are based on the traveler’s country of residency. Travel to Canada represents nonresident visitors to Canada. Travel from Canada is based on Canadian resident reentry data. Canadian resident reentry data represent Canadian residents returning from international destinations. The reentry of Canadian residents to Canada may be made directly from an overseas country or via the United States. Canadian resident reentry data are similar, but not exactly comparable with U.S. resident departure data. This is because Canadian residents may not necessarily leave and return by the same modes of transportation, and because Canadian residents could depart Canada in 1 calendar year, and return in another.


Table 10-1 is based on data compiled by the Banco de México. A portion of this data comes from the statistics provided by the Instituto Nacional de Migración (number of tourists who visit the country and visitors in cruises) and another is being built through statistical sampling methods (surveys and sample counting applied in some border regions). The main objective of the surveys of international travelers implemented by the Banco de México is to generate statistics for International Travelers who join the country’s Balance of Payments. In addition, it captures information about the profile of international travelers. The surveys collect data on average of the following indicators: the amount of spending, time of staying, income level, purpose of travel, transportation, point of departure and major cities visited. Surveys are applied at major international airports and border regions, and in some ports of arrival of cruises. When it refers to living abroad residents who visited Mexico (income), the interviews are applied at the time they leave the country, while the application of questionnaires to residents in the country (expenses) takes place when they return to Mexico.

For the purposes of its own survey program, Banco de México uses specific definitions to classify the visitors. However, due to the need to use a common terminology in sections 9 and 10, some categories were used for standard data tables.

  United States

 Air: Travel to the United States represents travel by visitors who are not U.S. residents. Nonresident visitor data are based on international arrivals by air to the United States. Nonresident visitors exclude resident aliens, aliens entering with refugee travel documents, and aliens applying for admission as immigrants. Transiting visitors en route to another country destination and official diplomats are excluded because they are not by definition considered as an international tourist visitor to the United States. Nonresident visitors also do not include alien crew operating aircraft or vessels operating between the United States and foreign territory.

Land: Travel to the United States by land consists of Canadian and Mexican residents only. The data presented in this table are from Canadian and Mexican government agencies, which are reported in the North American passenger travel section of NATS online database (i.e., tables 9-1b and 9-1c).

Travel from the United States

All Modes: Travel from the United States represents departures by U.S. residents. The U.S. Department of Commerce, International Trade Administration, the Office of Travel and Tourism Industries derives the total outbound travel based on the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) I-92 form (see Air below for a detailed description) and additional data provided by Mexico’s Secretaria de Turismo and Statistics Canada.

Air: Air travel from the United States represent departures by U.S. residents. U.S. resident departures data by air are primarily based on data collected by the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) on Form I-92, supplemented by the Survey of International Air Travelers, which is conducted by the International Trade Administration (ITA) at the Department of Commerce. Form I-92 is completed by air carriers, and provides data for the number of U.S. residents traveling abroad by air. The Survey of International Air Travelers provides data on the travel characteristics of U.S. residents traveling abroad by air.