Campaign to encourage US tourism launches
from The Associated Press
How do you sell Times Square and the Grand Canyon? The Carolinas and California? Residents of Japan, Canada and the United Kingdom are getting a taste of the United States' first-ever marketing campaign to try and stave off declining tourism. The print, Web and video ads released May 1 were created by Brand USA, a partnership of government agencies and private companies. The consortium was developed to act like the tourism ministries of countries such as Ireland, Italy or Israel. It's the first time the U.S. has marketed itself as a tourist destination to people living in other countries. More
Let's learn from our friends across the pond
TravelMole's Graham Mckenzie returns to the U.K. from International Pow Wow 2012 with a newfound respect for Brand USA. Here he explains why. "Tourism in the U.S. generated $1.9 trillion in economic output last year, raised $124 billion in tax revenue for local, state and federal government, created a $42.8 billion travel trade surplus and supported 14.4 million jobs (1 of every 9 in the U.S. economy as a whole). Yet during the past 10 years the slice of the global travel market cake the U.S. enjoys has been getting smaller. In the U.K., under the current regime, it is quite likely the solution to this scenario would have been to reduce spending and cut costs. Not so in the U.S." More
from Travel Weekly
There's still time to participate in National Travel & Tourism Week activities and U.S. Travel Rally Day May 8, and there are good reasons to make the effort. For one thing, politicians have short memories, but they perk up during election years. That makes this an excellent time to remind them the economic contributions of travel and tourism are not just entries on a spreadsheet; they are felt every day by real people and real companies working in their districts. More
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Congress approves freeze on travel spending
from Travel Weekly
Congress has voted to cut and freeze travel spending by government agencies for five years, an apparent response to the scandal over the General Services Administration's excessive spending on its Western Regions Conference in 2010. As passed by the House and the Senate, the measure would cap travel spending by government agencies at 80 percent of their 2010 level through 2016. It also would set new restrictions on government agency participation in meetings and conferences. More
It's not about Las Vegas
from Las Vegas Sun
With the Senate moving toward reining in government-sponsored conferences like the GSA's infamous spend-fest at M Resort, maybe those who have been blaming Las Vegas for the scandal can finally knock it off. The Senate's package of controls for conferences addresses the true root of the problem: out-of-control bureaucrats, not the place where they're misbehaving. More
Business travelers increasingly pick up own tabs
from USA Today
On nearly every trip DaWane Wanek takes for work, he finds himself reaching into his pocket to pay for something that he can't — or won't — charge his employer. Many business travelers say they have gotten used to spending their own money on the road. At times, it's voluntary. If they go over budget, whether by chance or by choice, they take care of it themselves. Other times, the companies refuse to cover all their costs. More
App lets users report racial, religious profiling by TSA
from The Hill
Airport passengers now can report alleged instances of racial or religious profiling by the Transportation Security Administration via their mobile phones. Starting April 30, an application was made available by a civil rights group for citizens of the Sikh faith, the New York-based Sikh Coalition. The group says the application, which has been dubbed "FlyRights," will help lessen the instances of members of religious and minority communities being targeted by airport security employees.
Screening at airports using profiling has backers, critics
from Orlando Sentinel via STLtoday.com
The silver-haired woman heading home to Georgia recently with her aluminum cane and titanium wrist implant posed little apparent threat to the airplane she intended to board. But she faced an increased chance of close scrutiny at Orlando International Airport just the same. Meanwhile, the young Egyptian woman wearing a hijab head scarf and waiting a few yards away assumed she would be treated just like everyone else.
International Pow Wow parties offer shows, thrill rides, concerts
from Biz Bash
U.S. Travel Association's International Pow Wow, the travel industry's major international marketplace, wrapped its run recently at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The last time the event came to town was 2004, prior to the city's development of L.A. Live — and a total of $7 billion in capital improvements. The newly renamed Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board and other local sponsors and participants were eager to show off. More
New York tourism set to generate $70 billion per year
NYC & Company, New York City's official tourism and marketing organization, has set a new goal to generate $70 billion in annual economic impact from travel and tourism by 2015. Building on a new visitation goal to attract 55 million visitors in this same time period, NYC & Company continues to expand its efforts, with particular focus on attracting international visitors — who account for 50 percent of direct tourism spending. More
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