WASHINGTON - U.S. Travel Association President and CEO Geoff Freeman issued the following statement on Israel’s admission to the Visa Waiver Program (VWP):

The highly successful Visa Waiver Program has a proven record of boosting travel exports and U.S. global competitiveness, benefiting U.S. destinations, businesses and the broader American economy. Following Israel’s admission to the Visa Waiver Program, the U.S. can expect to welcome 200,000 additional Israeli visitors per year, generating an additional $800 million in direct travel spending and producing an economic impact of roughly $1.8 billion.

U.S. Travel has long called for an expansion of the Visa Waiver Program for its numerous security and economic benefits. The U.K., one of the biggest competitors for global travelers, permits visa-free travel for more than 100 countries while the U.S. allows only 41 countries the same access. It is critical that the Biden administration continues to work alongside our key inbound markets to grow this vital program and increase U.S. global competitiveness.

About U.S. Travel Association

U.S. Travel Association is the national, non-profit organization representing the $1.2 trillion travel industry, an essential contributor to our nation's economy and success. U.S. Travel produces programs and insights and advocates for policies to increase travel to and within the United States. Visit ustravel.org for information and recovery-related data.

Greg Staley
U.S. Travel Association