January 30, 2012 | Issue #115

ABA Supports Obama’s Efforts To Boost Tourism

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ABA  announced its enthusiastic support for President Barak Obama’s strategy to significantly increase travel and tourism in the United States, and make the United States the world’s top tourist destination. 

“More money spent by more tourists means more businesses can hire more workers.  This is a pretty simple formula.  And that’s why we’re all here today -- to tell the world that America is open for business” the president said when he unveiled his plan during a speech in Orlando, Fla. last week.

Obama’s plan includes an increase in visa processing capacity in China and Brazil; expediting visa processing for all countries; expanding the Visa Waiver Program; appointing travel industry professionals to the U.S. Travel and Tourism Advisory Board and steps to promote National Parks.

“We applaud President Obama for acknowledging the important role tourism plays in the nation’s economy, and for spearheading this initiative that will help the tourism industry to continue to grow,” said ABA President & CEO Peter Pantuso.  “An influx of international tourists will help our members, who include motorcoach operators, tour operator, hotels, convention and visitor’s bureau’s and other attractions, support thousands of more jobs in the United States.”

 “But more can be done,” Pantuso continued. “We hope that the administration will also take steps to support domestic tourism – within the United States.”