TRUMP ‘IS NOT HARM­ING AMER­I­CAN TOURISM’

The Daily Telegraph - Travel - - FRONT PAGE -

Travel tran­scends pol­i­tics, the man in charge of mar­ket­ing the US to the world has told Tele­graph Travel, con­test­ing that the con­tro­ver­sial pres­i­dency of Don­ald Trump is hav­ing a neg­a­tive im­pact on the Amer­i­can tourism in­dus­try.

A fall in the num­ber of ar­rivals to Amer­ica in 2016 was la­belled the “Trump Slump” and seen as a

con­se­quence of the pres­i­dent’s out­spo­ken views. The Global Busi­ness Travel As­so­ci­a­tion said the US econ­omy was los­ing up to £140mil­lion a week be­cause of the slow­down.

The UN’s tourist agency said vis­i­tors were down again in 2017 by four per cent in the first six months, in­clud­ing a fall in Bri­tish trav­ellers, but the US’s own fig­ures showed 0.7 per cent growth for the year.

Tom Garzilli, chief mar­ket­ing of­fi­cer for Brand USA, the coun­try’s tourist board, said that Trump was not de­ter­ring vis­i­tors. “What we have found, and this is true of travel all over the world, is it re­ally tran­scends pol­i­tics, it tran­scends the is­sues of the day,” he said. “Peo­ple are trav­el­ling, peo­ple want to have great ex­pe­ri­ences. We know that we of­fer these things and our job is to get up and re­mind, ed­u­cate and in­spire.”

Garzilli re­mains con­fi­dent Bri­tons will con­tinue to travel to Amer­ica over the com­ing years, de­spite a weak pound. “What I’ve re­ally learnt in the five years I’ve been [at Brand USA] is en­forc­ing that the world re­ally loves Amer­ica,” he said. “The world wants to know Amer­ica, they want to come.”

In a Tele­graph Travel poll con­ducted at the start of the year, 56 per cent of

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