Business & Finance

Senate Confirms John Bryson for Commerce Secretary

October 24, 2011 - The U.S. Travel Association today applauded the U.S. Senate confirmation of John Bryson for commerce secretary. Bryson succeeds Gary Locke, U.S. Ambassador to China, who had been a strong advocate for improved traveler facilitation as commerce secretary.

“Thanks to his extensive experience in both the public and private sectors, John Bryson knows firsthand the important role that the $1.8 trillion travel industry plays in stimulating our economy and employing 14.1 million Americans,” said Roger Dow, president and CEO of the U.S. Travel Association. “We look forward to working with him on ways the travel industry can stimulate economic recovery, particularly through regaining America’s historic share of the overseas travel market, which would help meet the President’s stated goal of doubling U.S. exports.”

The U.S. Travel Association is the national, non-profit organization representing all components of the travel industry that generates $1.8 trillion in economic output and supports 14.1 million jobs. U.S. Travel's mission is to increase travel to and within the United States. Visit www.ustravel.org.

Coming Up In The September Online Hotel Business Review


Feature Focus
Hotel Group Meetings: Demand is Trending Up
Corporations and businesses are once again renewing their investments in people, strategic planning, and training and development. As a result, all indicators point to 2016 being a robust year for the hotel group meetings business. Group demand is strong and rates, especially during peak periods, are trending up. Still, hotels must continue to evolve to meet the changing expectations of group meeting planners and their clients. There are several trends and factors that are driving decision-making which planners have identified as being essential to the process. Though geographic location and room rates continue to be the most important factors when selecting a host property, food and beverage choices are becoming increasingly influential. Planners understand the value of first-class culinary options as these are often used to facilitate networking experiences. Another critical factor is the availability of sufficient bandwidth for high-speed wired and wireless connectivity to the internet. In addition, in an effort to eliminate unsightly and unwieldy power cords, planners are requesting the installation of mobile-device charging stations. These portable charging stations (which do not require devices to be plugged in) can be conveniently placed in common areas or directly in meeting rooms. Finally, there is a greater emphasis on teambuilding activities that are intended to challenge groups, and bring them closer together. Some hotels are offering scenic walking trails, GPS-aided scavenger hunts, kayaking into secluded coves or rollerblading on oceanfront boardwalks, among many other recreational activities. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group business and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.