Tourism Industry News
NTA Supports Freedom to Travel to Cuba
The National Tour Association announced its support for The Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act, H.R. 874 and S. 428, which was announced Tuesday by co-sponsors of the legislation, Senators Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., and Michael Enzi, R-Wyo.
With more than 700 tour company members, many of which offer travel outbound from the United States, NTA recognizes the importance of this market and the freedom to travel. In the material distributed Tuesday by the Senate sponsors, NTA was cited as a leading travel sector organization member of the Freedom to Travel to Cuba Coalition.
“NTA has supported this issue for many years, and we now stand strongly behind the passage of this legislation,” said NTA President Lisa Simon, CTP. “Americans should have the opportunity to explore the world unfettered by travel and currency restrictions, and we anticipate a very high demand for tours to Cuba through our tour operator members who see phenomenal curiosity for travel there. With The Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act, Americans can travel to Cuba to experience the rich diversity of Cuban culture and heritage.”
Senators Dorgan and Enzi, along with co-sponsor Sen. Christopher Dodd, D-Conn., held a news conference Tuesday announcing the introduction of the legislation. Reps. Bill Delahunt, D-Mass., and Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., also are introducing legislation.
For their leadership with this legislation, Simon said that NTA applauds Sens. Dorgan, Enzi, Dodd, and so-sponsoring Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind.; House co-sponsors Delahunt and Flake, as well as Rep. Sam Farr, D-Calif., co-chair of the House Tourism Caucus and the more than 100 other sponsors in the House.
“Once the legislation is passed, success in this new market will depend on helping our tour operators learn about Cuba,” Simon said. “We stand ready to assist them in this new business development.”
Re-examination of travel restrictions, which is addressed by The Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act, was one of the seven recommendations submitted to President Obama and leaders of Congress as the result of the December 2008 summit of travel and tourism organizations.
The National Tour Association is an association for packaged travel professionals. NTA strives to provide value for its members by advancing the packaged travel industry through its advocacy efforts and progressive leadership. Today, the NTA membership represents 40 countries, and includes tour and travel packagers of all types.