Ohio faces domestic and international challenges in light of booming travel, tourism


DARLENE: FORTY-SIX BILLION DOLLARS — THAT’S THE ESTIMATED ECONOMIC OUTPUT TRAVEL AND TOURISM HAS ON THE STATE OF OHIO ANNUALLY. NBC4’S JASON AUBRY TELLS US, FEDERAL LAWMAKERS SPENT TIME IN CENTRAL OHIO TODAY CELEBRATING THIS AND LAYING THE GROUND WORK FOR MORE. JASON AUBRY: TRAVEL AND TOURISM IS BIG BUSINESS IN OHIO. LAST YEAR, 7 BILLION DOLLARS WAS SPENT BY NEARLY 42 MILLION PEOPLE WHO CAME TO VISIT COLUMBUS, AND THAT IS KEEPING LOCAL TAXES LOW, BUT TRAVEL AND TOURISM IS ALWAYS UNDER ATTACK. THURSDAY LOCAL AND FEDERAL POLITICIANS LAUDED THE SUCCESS OHIO — ESPECIALLY COLUMBUS — HAS HAD IN ATTRACTING TRAVEL IN TOURISM. MAYOR ANDREW GINTHER / COLUMBUS : “I BELIEVE THAT THE NEXT DECADE FOR COLUMBUS IS GOING TO BE OUR GREATEST WITH RESPECT TO TRAVEL, TOURISM, AND HOSPITALITY” HOWEVER, THERE WAS VERY LITTLE TALK ABOUT THE CHALLENGES THE INDUSTRY FACES THURSDAY… AND THERE ARE PLENTY. ROGER DOW / PRESIDENT AND CEO, U.S. TRAVEL ASSOCIATION: “ONE OF THE CHALLENGES WE’VE HAD IS WE’VE LOST MARKET SHARE, WE’RE STILL UP BUT THE REST OF THE WORLD IS UP MORE.” DOW SAYS, THE BIG REASON FOR THAT IS THE DOLLAR — ITS MORE EXPENSIVE FOR TRAVELERS OUTSIDE THE US TO COME HERE THAN TO TRAVEL TO OTHER COUNTRIES… AND THEN THERE IS THE PRESIDENT. ROGER DOW / PRESIDENT AND CEO, U.S. TRAVEL ASSOCIATION: “THERE’S BEEN SO MUCH RHETORIC ABOUT SECURITY, AND SECURITY IS IMPORTANT, AND I’VE TOLD THE PRESIDENT THAT OVER AND OVER AGAIN, WE BELIEVE IN SECURITY; WITHOUT SECURITY THERE IS NO TRAVEL; BUT WE ALSO CAN HAVE A MORE WELCOMING MESSAGE AND THAT’S ALL OF OUR JOBS.” WHEN IT CAME TO PRESIDENT TRUMP, THERE WERE MIXED OPINIONS OVER WHETHER HE NEEDS TO ADDRESS HOW HIS PUBLIC IMAGE IS VIEWED BY INTERNATIONAL TRAVELERS. U.S. REP. STEVE STIVERS / OHIO 15TH CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT : “IT COULD USE A LITTLE WORK, I THINK, AND YOU KNOW, BUT THIS COUNTRY IS MORE THAN ANY ONE INDIVIDUAL.” U.S. REP. TROY BALDERSON / OHIO 12TH CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT : “THAT HAS NO IMPACT WHATSOEVER. I MEAN, PEOPLE AREN’T BECAUSE OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, THEY’RE COMING HERE BECAUSE THEY WANT TO GO HIKE THE HOCKING HILLS.” WHEN IT COMES TO DOMESTIC TRAVEL — DOW SAYS THE CHALLENGE PREVENTING IT IS SIMPLY TOO MANY OPTIONS. ROGER DOW / PRESIDENT AND CEO, U.S. TRAVEL ASSOCIATION: “OPTIONS TO DO SOMETHING ELSE, OPTIONS TO WATCH E-SPORTS, OPTIONS TO SIT AND PLAY A GAME, OPTIONS TO STAY HOME AND BUY A GIANT SCREEN TV; SO WE’VE GOT TO MAKE IT MORE EXCITING, MORE INTERESTING TO SAY, YOU’VE GOT TO BE THERE IN PERSON OR YOU MISSED IT.” JASON AUBRY, REPORTING: THE U-S TRAVEL ASSOCIATION PLANS TO MORE OF THESE ROADSHOWS IN OTHER CITIES AROUND THE COUNTRY. IN COLUMBUS, JASON AUBRY, NBC4. NOW STORM TEAM 4 WITH CENTRAL OHIO’S MOST ACCURATE FORECAST DAVE:

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