During a time when U.S. inbound travel is already losing its international market share, Brand USA, the country's public-private tourism marketing arm, is facing an uncertain future. Although bipartisan efforts are under way in Congress to reauthorize funding for Brand USA, the Trump administration has proposed eliminating its budget.
Saving Brand USA is a top priority for the U.S. Travel Association and the Visit U.S. Coalition. Citing data about its effectiveness, they argue that the marketing body, created in 2009, is needed now more than ever, given the administration's anti-immigration rhetoric and stricter visa policies. Exacerbating the situation is the fact that state marketing budgets are also in peril.
In general the U.S. has lagged behind other nations in marketing tourism to international visitors on the federal level. Another story below looks at efforts by Tourism Australia, which has been actively promoting inbound travel for decades, to strengthen interest in its aboriginal sites and culture.
Other countries have long figured out that it pays to roll out the welcome mat to global visitors. The United States needs to do the same.
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