Fortune poll: Nearly half of American travelers are reconsidering their international trips due to coronavirus fears

March 5, 2020, 12:45 PM UTC

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I was all set to depart for Las Vegas at the end of March to speak on a panel at the Adobe 2020 Summit. But that panel, along with the entire live part of the conference, which expected to have more than 20,000 attendees and Tom Brady as its keynote speaker, was scratched Tuesday as a result of COVID-19 fears.

If one canceled conference can nix thousands of flight tickets, it raises the question of how deeply COVID-19 concerns will impact airlines and tourism—and the overall economy. Already, air travel is starting to take a hit. Airlines like Delta have temporarily cancelled or reduced flights to countries like China, South Korea, and Italy that have been affected by the virus. And United Airlines announced that it will cut a portion of domestic and international flights.

To learn more about how coronavirus fears are impacting travel, Fortune and SurveyMonkey polled more than 2,600 Americans last week. We asked about their international but not domestic travel plans, since the survey was fielded prior to the outbreaks in the U.S.

Our poll found that, surprise, Americans are now more hesitant to go through with their abroad travel plans. But the numbers are stunning. Among folks who planned to fly internationally this year, 42% say they’re less likely to now. That number is even higher among just business travelers, with 46% saying they’d be less likely to travel internationally for work.

Of course, not everyone who says they’re less likely to travel internationally is going to follow through. However, these results do give airlines and tourism businesses a clear warning: They’re in for some turbulence—something that all the cancelled conferences and expos the past few days, including Facebook F8 and Google I/O, are making all the more clear.

The full results to our travel and airline survey will publish on Monday, March 16th in Fortune Analytics, our soon-to-launch premium newsletter that will bring you business insights based on exclusive surveys and proprietary data. (Interested? Learn more.)

*Methodology: The Fortune-SurveyMonkey poll was conducted among a national sample of 2,626 adults in the U.S. between February 24 to 27. This survey’s modeled error estimate is plus or minus 3 percentage points. The findings have been weighted for age, race, sex, education, and geography.