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[IWS] CRS: U.S. TRAVEL AND TOURISM: INDUSTRY TRENDS AND POLICY ISSUES FOR CONGRESS [2 April 2014]

IWS Documented News Service

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Institute for Workplace Studies-----------------Professor Samuel B. Bacharach

School of Industrial & Labor Relations-------- Director, Institute for Workplace Studies

Cornell University

16 East 34th Street, 4th floor--------------------Stuart Basefsky

New York, NY 10016 -------------------------------Director, IWS News Bureau

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Congressional Research Service (CRS)

 

U.S. Travel and Tourism: Industry Trends and Policy Issues for Congress

Michaela D. Platzer, Specialist in Industrial Organization and Business

April 2, 2014

http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/R43463.pdf

[full-text, 21 pages]

 

Summary

The U.S. travel and tourism industry accounted for 2.8% of gross domestic product (GDP) in

2011 and directly employed more than 5.7 million people in 2013. Tourism exports reached a

record $181 billion in 2013, representing about a quarter of total U.S. services exports. The sector

has posted an annual trade surplus with the world for more than two decades. The Department of

Commerce forecasts foreign visitor volume in the United States will reach 80 million in 2018.

Lawmakers have disagreed on the appropriate federal role in supporting travel and tourism. In

1996, Congress stopped funding the United States Travel and Tourism Administration (USTTA),

which for 35 years promoted the United States as a tourist destination. In 2009, it established a

public-private entity to promote U.S. tourism, the Corporation for Trade Promotion, which does

business as Brand USA. The program is funded by a $10 user fee assessed on international

visitors from certain countries and requires annual in-kind and cash matching contributions from

the U.S. tourism industry. Brand USA can receive up to $100 million annually in matching

federal funds. The Travel Promotion Act of 2009 (TPA; P.L. 111-145), which authorizes federal

funds for Brand USA, expires at the end of FY2015.

 

In 2012, the Obama Administration established a Task Force on Travel and Competitiveness,

which was charged with developing and implementing a strategy to increase the annual number

of international visitors to 100 million by 2021. Among other things, the task force has

recommended expediting visa processing for tourists from certain emerging economies, such as

China and Brazil, and expanding the Visa Waiver Program (VWP), which allows citizens from

more than three dozen countries to travel to the United States without obtaining visas. In the 113th

Congress, congressional committees have held hearings to assess the economic effects of travel

and tourism on the U.S. economy. Pending bills address various issues affecting travel and

tourism such as online gambling, safety and security aboard cruise ships, and taxes on the rental

of motor vehicles. The tourism industry may also be strongly affected by homeland security and

immigration legislation, which could make it more complex and costly for foreign visitors to

enter the United States.

 

Contents

Introduction ...................................................................................................................................... 1

Global Competition for Visitors....................................................................................................... 1

Impact of Travel and Tourism on the U.S. Economy ....................................................................... 3

Employment and Wages ............................................................................................................ 4

U.S. Trade in Tourism ................................................................................................................ 6

Types of Tourism ............................................................................................................................. 9

Issues for Congress ........................................................................................................................ 11

Tourism Promotion .................................................................................................................. 11

Visa Requirements ................................................................................................................... 13

Preclearance Facilities ............................................................................................................. 14

Tourism Taxes .......................................................................................................................... 15

Other Tourism-Related Legislation ......................................................................................... 16

 

Figures

Figure 1. International Tourist Arrivals, 1950-2030 ........................................................................ 2

Figure 2. U.S. Travel and Tourism Industry Employment ............................................................... 5

Figure 3. U.S. Travel and Tourism Exports ..................................................................................... 7

Figure 4. International Visitors to the United States ........................................................................ 8

 

Tables

Table 1. Travel and Tourism as a Share of U.S. Gross Domestic Product ....................................... 3

Table 2. Top 10 States in Employment and Expenditures Generated by Domestic and International Travelers ........................... 5

Table 3. U.S. Travel Wages and Employment by Selected Industry Sector, 2011 ........................... 6

Table 4. U.S. Receipts from Foreign Visitors .................................................................................. 9

 

Appendixes

Appendix. Defining and Measuring the Tourism Sector ............................................................... 17

 

Contacts

Author Contact Information........................................................................................................... 18

Acknowledgments ......................................................................................................................... 18

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This information is provided to subscribers, friends, faculty, students and alumni of the School of Industrial & Labor Relations (ILR). It is a service of the Institute for Workplace Studies (IWS) in New York City. Stuart Basefsky is responsible for the selection of the contents which is intended to keep researchers, companies, workers, and governments aware of the latest information related to ILR disciplines as it becomes available for the purposes of research, understanding and debate. The content does not reflect the opinions or positions of Cornell University, the School of Industrial & Labor Relations, or that of Mr. Basefsky and should not be construed as such. The service is unique in that it provides the original source documentation, via links, behind the news and research of the day. Use of the information provided is unrestricted. However, it is requested that users acknowledge that the information was found via the IWS Documented News Service.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 




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