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
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.