U.S. travel requirement bad for tourism

Stephen Beard Jan 9, 2009
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U.S. travel requirement bad for tourism

Stephen Beard Jan 9, 2009
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TEXT OF STORY

Steve Chiotakis: Starting Monday, there’s a new Department of Homeland Security system
for controlling visitors coming into the country. But a leading British travel expert says it could take a bite out of tourism here. From London, here’s Stephen Beard.


Stephen Beard: It’s called ESTA — Electronic System for Travel Authorization. This new security requirement applies to travellers who don’t need a visa to enter the United States. Those travelers must now fill out an online form at least three days before departure in order to get clearance from the U.S. to make the trip.

Simon Calder is one of Britain’s best-known travel experts. He says the new system will put quite a few people off visiting America:

Simon Calder: This latest hurdle, I fear, is going to deter an awful lot of prospective tourists from Britain and elsewhere in the world. America looks too difficult to get into, I’m sorry to say.

The Department of Homeland Security insists the new system will mean minimal inconvenience. Once an application’s been accepted, it will be valid for multiple visits for a period of two years.

In London, this is Stephen Beard for Marketplace.

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