Alexandria, VA, June 16, 2017 – Zane Kerby, President & CEO of the American Society of Travel agents (ASTA), issued the following statement in response to President Trump’s announcement of changes to regulations governing trade and travel between the U.S. and Cuba:
“ASTA is disappointed with the Trump Administration’s announcement that it plans to turn back the clock on expanded travel and trade between the U.S. and Cuba. For our members, much will depend on the details of new Treasury and Commerce Department regulations coming in the next few months, and ASTA plans to fully participate in that process. While challenges remain in terms of Cuba’s readiness for large volumes of American travelers, the past few years have seen a growth in business for U.S. travel agencies, tour operators, airlines, cruise lines, hotel and other travel companies. That progress is now at risk.
“ASTA continues to believe that the American people are the best ambassadors of U.S. values abroad, and should be allowed to freely travel to any destination they wish without restriction from their own government. Rather than shutting the door to this market 90 miles off our shores, we call on policymakers to enact legislation to do away with the statutory Cuba travel ban once and for all. While today is a setback, we will continue to advocate toward Cuba travel freedom and look forward to the day it becomes reality.”
Rebranded in 2018 as the American Society of Travel Advisors, ASTA is the leading global advocate for travel advisors, the travel industry and the traveling public. Its members represent 80 percent of all travel sold in the United States through the travel agency distribution channel. Together with hundreds of internationally-based members, ASTA’s history of industry advocacy traces back to its founding in 1931 when it launched with the mission to facilitate the business of selling travel through effective representation, shared knowledge and the enhancement of professionalism. For more information about the Society, visit ASTA.org. Consumers can connect with an ASTA travel advisor at TravelSense.org.