Courting International Visitors Is A Tough Sell These Days
Earlier this month there was a congressional hearing into why the national park system isn’t experiencing a steady rise in visitation. Several of those who testified urged the National Park Service to do a better marketing job.
Well, if the agency does focus on that, it will have an awful lot to overcome when it comes to courting international visitors.
According to a story aired by Al-Jazeera last week, the United States is not exactly at the top of international vacationers’ lists when it comes to deciding where to go. Part of the problem, according to those who attended the World Travel and Tourism Council conference, is that the U.S. doesn’t exactly have a good image after invading Iraq.
On top of that, the U.S.’s decision to implement some fairly stringent visa requirements also is hindering international tourism. And those who do venture to the U.S. are not thrilled to be fingerprinted and, in some cases, subjected to face scans.
"Among Europeans," said Jay Rasulo, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, the United States "was the third favorite destination, now it's the sixth and declining."