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April 11, 2014

Brand USA Reauthorized; U.S. Travel Association Praises Accomplishments

The U.S. Travel Association is hailing the introduction of Travel Promotion, Enhancement and Modernization Act of 2014, which would reauthorize Brand USA—a non-profit, public-private partnership dedicated to increasing inbound international travel to the United States.

The program, according to Oxford Economics, generates an estimated $47 in economic benefits for every $1 spent on travel promotion. It is funded by international visitor fees and private matching funds, with no costs being borne by U.S. taxpayers. The bill, co-sponsored by Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) and Reps. Gus Bilirakis (R-Fla.) and Peter Welch (D-Vt.), would reauthorize the program until 2020.

In 2013, Brand USA increased inbound international travel to the United States by 2.3 percent, resulting in 1.1 million additional trips to America. The additional visitation spurred by Brand USA resulted in an estimated $3.4 billion in new visitor spending and $7.4 billion in increased economic output, supported more than 53,000 U.S. jobs and generated $972 million in local, state and federal tax revenue.

The program's impact is especially noteworthy considering that before 2010, the United States was the only major travel destination worldwide that did not have a national travel and tourism marketing organization.

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