Philippine Daily Inquirer

How the US plans to lure tourists from China, India, other emerging markets

HE NEXT BIG THING IN travel would be regular trips to themoon. Short of arranging trips to themoon, which technicall­y can now be done, we’re working very hard to get people within and outside the United States to appreciate and understand the value of tra

- Text and photos by Alex Y. Vergara

TIt was hard to tell if Roger Dow was serious or merely trying to get some laughs. But the flamboyant president and CEO of US Travel Associatio­n (USTA) left journalist­s with little room to doubt the seriousnes­s of his group’s efforts to boost inbound travel to the US.

Known for his dramatic entrances during big gatherings (this year, he literally dropped on stage while dangling from a harness a la Cirque du Soleil), Dow was a constant presence as he welcomed more than 5,000 delegates during last May’s Internatio­nal Pow Wow in Orlando, Florida. He even dressed up as a NASA astronaut to keynote a luncheon sponsored by Texas Tourism.

Around 1,100 domestic and internatio­nal buyers from 70 countries, including the Philippine­s, 1,000 US travel organizati­ons and 400

 ?? “SHAMU Rocks” debuts during the concluding party for Internatio­nal PowWow delegates hosted by SeaWorld. ?? ROGER Dow, president and CEO of US Travel Associatio­n (center), receives an award from Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer and Gary Sain of the Orlando/Orange County Convention­s Visitors Bureau at the Internatio­nal PowWow media brunch.
“SHAMU Rocks” debuts during the concluding party for Internatio­nal PowWow delegates hosted by SeaWorld. ROGER Dow, president and CEO of US Travel Associatio­n (center), receives an award from Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer and Gary Sain of the Orlando/Orange County Convention­s Visitors Bureau at the Internatio­nal PowWow media brunch.

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