US to Boost Foreign Tourism
In a bid to overhaul its tainted image abroad, the United States government on Monday said that it is planning to commit more than $100 million to boost tourism and encourage foreigners that would generate economic growth to the embattled nation.
Obama is eyeing growth in the marketing and airlines industry as a result of the program.
Washington: The federal government is planning to spend more than $100 million to boost tourism and overhaul its tainted image abroad. Recently, President Barack Obama has signed a bill that aims to promote global tourism that will result to economic benefits.
The program, which will be funded by private sectors, will include marketing campaigns that will draw foreign tourists.
To encourage tourists from abroad, the program will eliminate red taping for people applying for a tourist visit. There is also a proposal that foreign visitors should not be required to have a visa which usually takes a longer time to acquire.
When asked about the program, US Travel Association senior vice president Geoff Freeman said tourism bill will “create a message that the US is welcoming visitors even after the 9/11 attack.”
However, Freeman said the “ambitious plan” will only be successful if the government will address the common problems encountered by most foreign tourists: “unfriendly welcome process”, tough security checks, intrusive searches, and long lines.
Freeman also believes that the effort should not only focus on the landmarks and popular attractions in the US, but also on the country’s business viability.
“It would be better if we let people around the world to know that we want their business”, Freeman added.
According to a recent study, the number of overseas visitors in the US has steadily declined over the past decade.
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