Lodging Industry Commends President Obama's Recognition of Positive Impact of Travel/Tourism
President highlights industry’s role in generating jobs and revenues
The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA), the sole national association representing all segments of the 1.8 million-employee lodging industry, issued the following statement regarding President Obama's speech today at the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York, highlighting the positive impact of travel and tourism as a domestic economic driver:
years after releasing the National Travel and Tourism Strategy which seeks to bring 100 million international visitors a year to the United States. Our nation, and the hotel industry, have so much to offer, from picturesque inns in quaint New England towns, to slope-side hotels of Rocky Mountain ski areas, to beachfront resorts of the Gulf Coast. And when foreign visitors stay in our hotels they spend money in the communities, creating jobs and sparking economic growth," said Katherine Lugar, AH&LA president/CEO. "The good news is that Congress can take important steps this year to attract travelers from around the globe by reauthorizing BrandUSA, the nation's public- private marketing entity, and passing the JOLT Act, to reduce visa processing times and limit the hurdles facing those foreign visitors."
The hospitality industry, and travel and tourism more broadly, are crucial components ofthe nation's economic recovery and provide millions of jobs that cannot be outsourced overseas. Foreign visitors are vital customers to the hotel industry, and in 2013 roughly 70 million international travelers came to the U.S., up from 55 million in just four years earlier. On average, each international visitor spends $4,500, benefitting not just hotels, but restaurants, retail stores and other businesses in the community. In total, travel and tourism account for almost 30% of all U.S. service exports.
About the American Hotel & Lodging Association
Serving the hospitality industry for more than a century, the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) is the largest national association solely representing all segments of the 8 million jobs the U.S. lodging industry supports, including hotel owners, REITs, chains, franchisees, management companies, independent properties, bed and breakfasts, state hotel associations, and industry suppliers. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., AHLA focuses on strategic advocacy, communications support, and educational resources for an industry that advances long-term career opportunities for employees, invests in local communities across the country and hosts more than one billion guests" stays in American hotels every year. AHLA proudly represents a dynamic hotel industry of more than 54,000 properties that supports $1.1 trillion in U.S. sales and generates nearly $170 billion in taxes to local, state and federal governments. Learn more at www.AHLA.com.