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Celebrating Two Years of Progress in National Strategy to Reenergize U.S. Travel and Tourism

Today, two years after the U.S. Department of Commerce issued the National Travel and Tourism Strategy and set an ambitious five-year goal to welcome 90 million international visitors annually by 2027, the Department is announcing we expect to reach that goal ahead of schedule. According to the latest estimates from the International Trade Administration, the United States expects to welcome 91 million annual visitors by 2026, surpassing the Strategy’s goal one year in advance of the anticipated timeline. In celebration of all the progress made since the launch of the National Travel and Tourism Strategy, Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo issued the following statement: 

“Thanks to the steadfast leadership and efforts of the Biden-Harris Administration, travel and tourism continue to be critical drivers of economic growth and employment across the United States, supporting 9.5 million American jobs and $2.3 trillion of economic output per year. But our work is far from over. The Commerce Department is taking decisive actions to support the travel and tourism industry’s recovery from the economic challenges of a global pandemic, and we will continue working with state and local governments and private sector partners to welcome more international visitors to the U.S. so they can experience the diversity, beauty, and hospitality that make our country the premier travel and tourism destination in the world.”

The National Travel and Tourism Strategy focuses federal efforts in partnership with the private sector to strengthen the global competitiveness of U.S. travel and tourism and create a more equitable, resilient and sustainable industry for the future. Some successes over the past two years include:

  • Increasing capacity and efficiency to issue 20% more non-immigrant visas in 2023 compared to pre-pandemic issue rates through the U.S. Department of State;
  • Funding $750 million for travel, tourism and outdoor recreation communities provided by the American Rescue Plan and issued by the Economic Development Administration;
  • Investing $195 million in climate restoration and resilience projects to protect our national parks, and more through the U.S. Department of the Interior.

From 2020 to 2023, international visitation to the United States increased 246% to 66.5 million, travel exports generated by international visitors increased 153% to $213 billion, and American jobs supported by travel exports increased 63% to 1.6 million. As a result of international visitation to the United States outpacing travel to the rest of the world, our country’s share of global travel increased from 4.7% in 2020 to 5.2% in 2023.

For more information about the National Travel and Tourism Strategy, please visit the Travel and Tourism Strategy Fact Sheet.  

Originally posted at https://www.commerce.gov/news/press-releases/2024/07/celebrating-two-years-progress-national-strategy-reenergize-us-travel

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