12 October 2009

American travel visa bill approved by house

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A bipartisan initiative of legislation, which will create jobs and enhance the US as a travel destination, has cleared the US House of Representatives.

The American travel visa legislation, called the Travel Promotion Act, when it is made into law will see a nominal fee charged for the ESTA visa, to promote the US as a travel destination.

“The Travel Promotion Act will not only boost travel and create jobs in the tourism industry, it will enhance America’s image around the world,” Congressman Bill Delahunt, who championed the bill.

“Over the past eight years, the United States’ share of the world travel market has decreased by nearly 20 per cent, costing thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in revenue.  We need to reverse that trend and create more jobs here at home,” said Delahunt.  

The Travel Promotion Act will create a public-private partnership to promote the United States as a premier international travel destination, paid for by private sector contributions and a nominal US$10 fee on foreign travellers who enter the United States under the ESTA visa waiver program. 

The bill has been estimated to attract 1.6 million new international visitors to the country and add $4 billion to the American economy.

Travel Promotion Act will now go back to the Senate for final clearance and then on to President Obama for his signature before becoming law.

The American Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in American visa and immigration services.

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