Everywhere in the news this month, there was an inescapable consistent story for those of us who work in the travel industry: a growing decline of interest in travel to the United States from aboard (for understandable reasons, mostly logistically, but also emotional). This is troubling not only for professional reasons, but it is also sad to know that we will miss the chance to meet more people from different cultures, and for them in turn to experience a city that we believe is the best in the world.
(Although we do love meeting visitors from all over the States, or even from elsewhere in NY!)
So, if there are any foreign travelers reading this, I hope we can change your minds. It is often difficult, but we all must remember to separate the people of a nation from its politics. I had many friends of mine from the Guides Association of NYC who recently visited Iran (not a country most Americans would consider okay to visit) and described it as an amazing and life-changing experience. That is what is amazing about the power of travel. And I believe that the people of States are even more inviting.
Those friends & colleagues from the Guides Association also recently put together a video to sell New York to visitors from everywhere. The message: No matter where you are from, there is a little slice of home in NYC. When you visit New York, you're not going somewhere new, you're coming home.
I'll let that video make the rest of my case for me. And hope that our government will again be as inviting as we wish to be.
(I make a few small cameos in this video, in the tour bus scenes. I feel like a rock star.)