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Published on Friday, June 9, 2017

 

As evidence mounts of a ‘Trump Slump’, Designate partner Jason Triandafyllou says it’s time for our tourism friends across the Atlantic to pull together.

“Since Donald Trump’s election, and the constant stream of inflammatory rhetoric coming both from his mouth and his early morning tweets, the omens have been worsening for inbound tourism from the UK to the US. At first it was anecdotal, but pretty soon the stats were confirming what everyone was worrying about. The latest figures, as reported on TravelMole, show the UK visitor in particular is staying away, and in significant numbers.

Some of this will undoubtedly be down to the unfavourable exchange rate, but it is clear that the travel industry in the US, gathered earlier this week in Washington DC for IPW 2017, fears for Brand America. Unlike the rest of the country, the travel trade appears united, speaking with one voice to declare that America is open for tourism, regardless of the Trump Administration’s rhetoric or priorities on border controls and ethnic vetting.

Some destinations, such as Los Angeles, are actively putting their money where their mouths is and declare that ‘Everyone is Welcome’. This is leading by example. Visit Florida is also fighting back, with the State Governor weighing in to oppose tourism budget cuts at a time that would be extremely damaging.

Much like the US Conference of Mayors who declared their support for Sadiq Khan in his most recent spat with POTUS, the US travel industry needs to rally behind Brand USA, which is both figuratively and literally under threat. Destinations, tour operators and airlines, big and small, should be able to fight their way back up the British traveller’s consideration list. A concerted effort of good marketing will beat the Trump Slump.”

* We will be asking the industry on both sides of the Atlantic for their thoughts on how to combat the Trump Slump the day after Independence…

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