Dear Ranking Member Luetkemeyer:
We represent inbound tour operators based across the U.S. who promote international travel to the United States. Inbound tour operators facilitate inbound travel services for both independent and group travelers with their business partners – international tour operators, corporate travel buyers and travel agents. They provide everything from hotel bookings to full-service itineraries that include accommodations, transportation, dining, and attractions.
The inbound travel sector produces a positive trade balance, in fact the largest portion of the positive trade equation. Every dollar generated by international visitation goes 100% to exports to the benefit of the United States in terms of jobs, economic impact, and balance of trade. Inbound tour operators drive international business to other travel and hospitality sectors, like hotels, transportation companies, attractions and restaurants.
With your understanding of the impact international inbound travel has on our nation’s economy, we seek your assistance in addressing the needs of these small businesses.
We’re working with the committee to see that two bills HR 1757, sponsored by Representative Sean Patrick Maloney of New York, and HR 2120, sponsored by Representatives Mark Amodei of Nevada, Charlie Crist of Florida, Dina Titus of Nevada, and Bill Pascrell of New Jersey, are reported out of your committee for a floor vote as part of any additional stimulus actions.
These bills provide more resources for SVOGs and specifically make it possible that companies like inbound tour operators are eligible, which is the purpose of HR 2120. Like live venues, theaters, museums and others currently eligible for SVOGs, inbound tour operators (the vast majority of which are small businesses) have been completely shut down since March 2020 when international travel bans and lockdowns first went into effect. We should note, we promote and sell live venues, theaters, museums and other attractions to our international partners.
We would be happy to bring together inbound operators from across the country to meet virtually with the committee minority staff for further discuss.
You may reach either of us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 859-955-9098. You will also find contact information for our inbound operator member co-signers below. Thank you.
Peter van Berkel