The Visit U.S. Coalition, which formed earlier this year with the goal of reversing the decline in international visitation to the U.S., proposed that the Trump administration designate a senior official focused on elevating travel and tourism to a national priority.

The proposal was part of a targeted policy agenda the coalition released Wednesday, aimed at reversing a decline in inbound international travelers to the U.S. that began in 2015.

"The president understands how to stimulate prosperity and job growth, as evidenced by his tax-cut package and his focus on economy-boosting priorities such as infrastructure," said U.S. Travel Association CEO Roger Dow. "International tourism is an incredibly potent driver of economic activity and job creation, but America is falling behind the rest of the world in attracting those dollars. Recapturing the U.S. market share of international travel would further strengthen his economic record and help realize his vision of consistent three percent GDP growth."

The coalition also encouraged the administration and Congress to promote the U.S. abroad through Brand USA, the U.S.'s public-private destination marketing organization, which was cut out of Trump's budget proposal last summer. 

Other policy proposals include expanding intelligence sharing with other countries and adding more member nations to the Visa Waiver Program (VWP); expanding access to travel visas and increasing the number of visa processing facilities in high demand countries; and addressing consular staffing needs in key international locations. 

The Visit U.S. Coalition also calls for increasing the number of U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at ports of entry, improving port of entry infrastructure, and expanding participation in the Global Entry trusted-traveler program to more markets.

The proposals align with goals that the U.S. Travel Association, a founding member of the coalition, has long advocated.

The Visit U.S. Coalition members include the American Hotel & Lodging Association, American Resort Development Association, American Gaming Association, CLIA, International Association of Exhibitions and Events, Society of Independent Show Organizers, Travel Technology Association, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.


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