Visitor numbers shrank in four out of seven months this year – with the biggest dips shortly after Trump’s ‘Muslim travel ban’
THE number of tourists visiting the US has dropped this year – and Donald Trump is getting the blame.
Visitor numbers shrank in four of the seven months for which data is available so far this year.
According to research by the US Travel Association, the declines were steepest in February (6.8 per cent) and March (8.2 per cent), with a slight rise mainly due to the travel-heavy Easter holiday in that month.
Those biggest drops in travel came in the aftermath of Trump’s “Muslim ban,” which stopped nationals from seven different Muslim countries from visiting the US.
But The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) says it’s not just these countries that were put off visiting following the ban.
A fall in US holiday bookings was also seen in other parts of the world.
With travel supporting one in nine American jobs and inbound international travel the second biggest overall US export, the head of US Travel says that the country needs to find ways to reverse the trend quickly.
US Travel Association President and CEO Roger Dow said: “The international travel market is ultra-competitive, and the US is falling behind."
He continued: “Inbound travel to the U.S. already went through one ‘lost decade’ after 9/11, it took a sustained national policy effort to return to the pre-9/11 level of travel exports, which only happened last year.
“If we don’t want to give back all of that progress, the time to act is now.”