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by Sarah J.F. Braley | April 05, 2012

Noting that job gains in the travel industry have outpaced other industries and that travel exports increased by more than 13 percent in 2011 to a record $152 billion, the U.S. Travel Association has introduced a five-point plan to continue boosting those numbers. The points are: 1) welcome more visitors to the United States, 2) reduce travel hassles, 3) keep America meeting, 4) lower energy costs for travelers, and 5) strengthen communities and families. For meetings-related efforts, the USTA has created a toolkit for industry professionals (available here) offering background materials (the Keep America meeting white paper and a meetings fact sheet) and suggestions for organizing back-of-the-house tours to introduce elected officials to the meetings process. It also provides information on how to conduct an in-district visit with elected officials and how to host a letter-writing day to let Congress know how important meetings and travel continue to be.