Tourism week

It's not too early to begin the countdown to National Travel and Tourism Week, which will be observed May 3 to 11. If you're thinking about participating, you have precisely two months to get your act together.

The theme this year is the "Travel Effect," a term coined by the U.S. Travel Association that roughly translates to "travel is good for you."

Travel and Tourism Week is designed in part to remind legislators, mayors, consumers and others in the business community that the enterprise of travel accounts for 3% of our gross domestic product, 12% of our jobs and close to $130 billion in state, local and federal tax revenue. It's good for the economy.

The Travel Effect takes it a step further: Travel is good for what ails you. Properly executed, business travel to meetings, conferences and training events are good for a company. Vacations are also good for workers. They come back refreshed and energized.

Vacations are good for families, who can spend quality stress-free time together. Travel is even good for lovers. For seniors, for singles. You name it, the research is there.

Of course, travel professionals don't need to be reminded of the benefits of travel, but that's not the purpose of Tourism Week. The purpose is to give travel professionals the opportunity to remind everybody else.

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