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IITA Insights Newsletter - February 1, 2017
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Greetings!

There has been a significant reaction to President Trump’s recent Executive Order on immigration and refugees – not only in the U.S., but around the world. Today’s article, “Immigration Executive Order Raises Multiple Concerns,” identifies some of the issues and confusion that have resulted from the EO.

IITA was approached by Travel Weekly for a statement on the Executive Orders. Executive Director Lisa Simon issued the following statement to Travel Weekly that I feel needs to also be passed along to our membership.

“We are concerned that the recent Executive Order on immigration along with other plans by the administration to strengthen security may have a negative effect on inbound travel. We, of course, support strong national security, and we believe that programs like the Visa Waiver Program can aid the administration in facilitating secure international travel to the U.S.

“There is still a lot of confusion surrounding the executive order and our members are concerned that there could be prolonged disruption to inbound travel if clarification on implementation does not come quickly.

“We’re hearing concern about the impact on three groups of potential travelers to the U.S.: those who can no longer visit as a direct result of the EO, those who may be afraid to come due to the lack of clarity and other restrictions being discussed by the administration, and those who may simply choose not to come in response to the current political climate.

“Our annual Summit is next week and we’ll be discussing these issues with our members to better understand their concerns and challenges, so we may carry their voice in our work with the administration and industry to come to mutually beneficial solutions.”                                                                     - Lisa Simon
 
This will be one of the advocacy issues discussed at the Summit next week…please come prepared with your thoughts on the EO and other policies the administration has or plans to put into place that may have implications on international travel to the U.S., so we know what final stance we need to make for our members.

Let’s work together to educate the administration on the economic importance of inbound travel to the U.S. and the policies and procedures that may produce mutually beneficial solutions. 

Looking forward to seeing you in Biloxi!

-Gary Schluter, Chairman
 Rocky Mountain Holiday Tours

February 1
Appointment Scheduling Closes

February 3
Manual Appointment Scheduling Opens

February 6
Manual Appointment Scheduling Closes

March 28-29
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Tribute to Jacob Kimbro

We lost a long-time industry colleague this morning – Jacob “Jay” Kimbro passed away with family by his side. Jay was the Director of Sales for Cirque du Soleil for the past seven years and was with the Disney Theatrical Group for a decade prior. He was involved in promoting theater, travel and tourism for nearly 30 years.

Jay always said that our business was built on relationships – and he had many. He will be greatly missed by so many of his industry family and friends. We will share any details regarding memorial services as we learn more details.
Immigration Executive Order Raises Multiple Concerns
 
When President Donald Trump issued an Executive Order stopping all immigration of any kind from Syria and suspending immigration from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Yemen for a minimum of ninety days, there was an immediate reaction both in the United States and around the world.

The question of travel to the United States is now colored by this new policy, which has ranged in its interpretation from permanently excluding some visitors by national origin, excluding others by religion, potentially changing visa and entry policies without any advance notice, and even excluding re-entry to people with established status, such as Green Card holders and dual citizens.

The outrage about this Executive Order has been extensive, especially in other countries.  The reaction within the United States has been strong and bi-partisan with many citing it as a violation of the founding principles of the nation and its history of immigration.

Click here to read more. 
Participating Inbound Tour Operators:
 
  • Amadeo Travel Solutions – Joseph Walker
  • America 4 You -  Marita Ross
  • AmericanTours International – Nick Hentschel
  • Attractions4Us LLC -  Savy Grant
  • Attractions4Us LLC – Tracy Harris
  • Be The World - Miguel Angel Del Aguila
  • Bonotel Exclusive Travel - Elliot Calloway
  • Bonotel Exclusive Travel - Brandon Weaver
  • Bookohotel LLC - Sheila Martinez
  • Chinese Host, Inc – David Huang
  • Cosmopolitan Incentives - Jordi  Zarroca
  • Event Travel Solutions – Pia Jayatilake
  • Gen Travel Solutions – Gabriel Nunez
  • Grupo TREND – Jay Santos
  • Hotelbeds USA, Inc. – Kristen Sanders
  • Hotelbeds USA, Inc. – Nick Van Winsen
  • JTB USA Inc – Katsuhisa Seki
  • North America Destinations – Freedom Stephane
  • Rocky Mountain Holiday Tours – Gary Schluter
  • TeamAmerica – Kenia Olivence
  • The Mark Travel Corporation – Luba Djordjevic
  • Tiqets - Jon Peahl
  • Tour America – Jennifer Chang
  • Tourico Holidays, Inc. – Michael Deane
  • TourMappers North America – Doug Kellogg
  • Travalco USA, Inc. -  Peter van Berkel
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