President Obama has made plans to take his family to the Gulf Coast for a weekend vacation on August 14. This move will hopefully signal to travelers that there are tourist areas that have not been affected by the oil spill.
Roger Dow, president and CEO of the US Travel Association, responded to the news the following statement:
“On behalf of the 400,000 workers in the travel and tourism industry along the Gulf Coast, I applaud and thank President Obama for recognizing the important signal this announcement sends to those considering a vacation in the Gulf region this summer. Actions like this will send a clear message that large areas of the Gulf shoreline remain clean and open for business. Each individual, family, or business employee that travels there will play a significant role in saving jobs and helping mitigate the long-term effects of the oil spill on travel and tourism in the region.
“A study by Oxford Economics released today shows that, based on analysis of 25 previous disasters, the Gulf region’s travel industry will likely be impacted by the oil spill over the next three years and could lose US$22.7 billion in travel spending if significant efforts to clear up common misperceptions aren’t made. This is a major step in promoting travel to the region. We look forward to working closely with the White House and Congress to ensure our government continues to do all it can to relieve hardship for the travel community in the Gulf. To help in that effort, we released a ‘Roadmap to Recovery’ outlining specific policy recommendations today.”