IN THE NEWS: HOTEL ONLINE – Travel industry to launch coalition in response to drop in international visits to U.S.

International travelers generated $246 billion in spending in 2016 according to the U.S. Travel Assn., the trade group for the nation’s travel industry. About half of all foreign visitors to the U.S. come from Mexico and Canada, with the rest coming from Europe, Japan, China and Brazil, among other countries.

Jonathan Grella, executive vice president of public affairs for the U.S. Travel Assn., said the declining visitor numbers are an “undeniable wake-up call that we must turn this into a national priority.”

The trade group plans to launch a coalition with other U.S. industries, called “Visit USA,” he said. The goal is to send the message that the U.S. welcomes international visitors, Grella said, adding that the travel group plans to announce details of the coalition in the next few weeks.

He declined to blame Trump’s anti-immigration diatribes for the decline in visitors but said “a very big portion of the coalition’s work is to promote more balanced rhetoric.”

“We want to get to the place that the administration says we are closed for terrorism but open for business,” Grella said.

Original article found here.